Ramsaroop calls on ERC to probe Harmon’s controversial statements during Berbice visit

APNU/AFC Leader David Granger and Opposition Leader Joseph Harmon in West Coast Berbice on Monday

Businessman and politician, Peter Ramsaroop, has called on the Ethnic Relations Commission (ERC) to investigate the controversial comments made by Opposition Leader Joseph Harmon during a recent visit to West Coast Berbice (WCB).

On Monday, Harmon and APNU/AFC Leader David Granger visited the families of the two teenagers who were brutally murdered over the past weekend.

However, during their visit, they used the opportunity to score political points by casting blame on the PPP/C Government for the tragedy and pushing a narrative that it was politically motivated.

They also referred to the PPP as a fraudulent government and called for residents to reject them if they ventured into their communities to offer support.

Ramsaroop, however, lambasted Harmon for politicising the tragedy saying that he (Harmon) is using the incident to sidetrack the nation from the investigations currently ongoing into attempts to alter the results of the March 2 General and Regional Elections.

“So Mr Harmon is trying to campaign against the PPP, he is using terminology that the ERC must investigate; and those are racial inciting comments he is making and I hope it is dealt with very aggressively by the ERC.

“Coming up with statements about fraudulent elections, he is again in some dream world…Mr Harmon is trying to distract the nation from the Mingos of the world and the Lowenfields of the world,” Ramsaroop said during an interview on Globespan Wednesday evening.

“More organisations need to come out and let him know that this is not about the election, this is not about the PPP, this is about our people, our country and we got to move forward and stop politicising the situation,” Ramsaroop added.

Ramsaroop who is also a member of the PPP/C asserted that the focus by all stakeholders now should be on bringing the perpetrators of the killings to face justice.

“I challenge the ERC to investigate him and to make sure that he understands that our nation is on a brink in terms of what has happened,” Ramsaroop expressed.

Peter Ramsaroop

He said that Harmon should realise that the elections are over and a legitimate Government; headed by Dr Irfaan Ali is in place.

The ERC is a constitutional body established under the Herdmanston Accord. It works with persons and agencies to promote harmonious ethnic relations. The Commission is also mandated to investigate complaints against persons making comments which are believed to be inciting, among other functions.

The badly-mutilated bodies of 16-year-old Isaiah Henry and 19-year-old Joel Henry of West Coast Berbice (WCB) were discovered almost one day after they went missing. They had reportedly left last Friday to pick coconuts in the backdam.

After hours of searching, the badly-chopped bodies were discovered among the bushes and were partially covered in mud. The murders have sparked outrage in the communities along the West Berbice corridor, resulting in violent protests. Two persons have since been killed in retaliation by the protestors.

Additionally, some passersby have been robbed and beaten and buildings and vehicles set on fire. Several roads were also been blocked over the past three days, preventing commuters from getting to their destinations freely.

President Irfaan Ali had made a passionate appeal to the residents to express their emotions in a manner that is lawful and respectful and allow the Guyana Police Force (GPF) to carry out its duties uninterrupted.

The President had also cautioned all Guyanese to be very careful regarding their  comments on social media so as to avoid the situation deteriorating.