By The Piper.
[www.inewsguyana.com] – When the AFC was in opposition it often and, sometimes rightfully, charged the then sitting PPP government with not listening to the Guyanese people. Even stronger charges were made about corruption, wastage, abuse of taxpayers money, bad policies and so on. The charges were always made with moral fervor.
During the last election campaign the AFC made bold promises centered on cleaning up government, weeding out corruption, and governing solely in the interest of the Guyanese people. Recent APNU-AFC government policies have broken practically all of the promises. Good governance in Guyana today is on life-support.
The first and most egregious betrayal, and yes it is nothing but that, is the scandalous, step level pay raises for cabinet ministers, multiple vice-presidents, and of course the Prime Minister who is quickly becoming a multi-millionaire on the backs of Guyanese taxpayers. In what is nothing short of astounding shamelessness, the APNU-AFC government is defending its massive pay-raise rip-off as an anti-corruption strategy.
This column was never intended to single out any individuals for criticism but the situation now demands naming those responsible for the public assault on democratic governance. It is in this light that I call on Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo to immediately, and without reservation, decline his millions of dollars in salary increase and bonuses. Nagamootoo should also call on all the AFC members in the cabinet to do the same.
Fellow beneficiaries of the pay-raise bonanza, including Khemraj Ramjattan, Cathy Hughes, and Raphael G.C. Trotman (among others) should do the same. Not only are these people already well-off, but they are the very ones who once stood on the mountain-top and shouted to the world about government abuse.
More than anything else, AFC supporters both in Guyana and overseas, should demand that the AFC leaders honour the promises made, especially when in exchange for good governance, they dug deep into their pockets to bankroll the party. . If Nagamootoo and company refuse to listen to their own supporters, the rank and file of the party should use every legal means to recall and replace them. They should not wait for the next election to take action. AFC supporters have a moral responsibility to the Guyanese people because they are the ones who put the AFC where it is today.
The AFC broke one of its most sacred promises from day one when it went back on its word not to form a government with the PNC. The AFC supporters were asked to swallow that distasteful pill. Now they are asked to take an overdose. Everything in political life has limits and the pay-raise scandal is one such moment. The AFC shall not see another dime from my circle.