December 21, 2014

Assumptions…

..on SWAT

Now, even though Agriculture’s still one of our mainstays, when we bring up the subject of SWAT, we’re not talking about “Soil and Water Assessment Tools!! Special Weapons And Tactics (SWAT) squads have been on the minds of our citizens for more than a decade. You can’t blame them.

With the increased firepower available to criminals and their willingness to use them without any qualms, they’ve been a fixture in Police Forces in developed countries since the late 60s.

But with bodies dropping like fleas from even armed gangs of criminals since 1998 – and intensifying into wholesale massacres by 2008 – somehow we couldn’t scrounge up one. Well, there was that “attempt” under the watch of then Commissioner of Police (COP) Winston Felix around 2005. We even had British experts in short pants training some of the identified local squaddies – code named “Fountain Squad?” – who sported all kinds of fancy weaponry.

After the secret 2006 tape recordings of Felix and Basil Williams of the PNC about “heading off” the Government from the gunmen committing the Agricola massacre, we don’t have to be geniuses to figure out why that SWAT incarnation had to die stillborn! Right Bannuh??

So here we are, eight years later – and at least three Commissioners down the road – and we’ve finally got a real live SWAT unit here!! Twenty seven men trained to take on anything the criminals might throw at us – or them. We should be relieved, no??

Well…ummmm… not so quick! According to the latest COP there hasn’t been a “serious or high profile situation” that would justify fielding these fellas yet!! And that’s just fine by him.

In fact, if they’re never deployed that’ll prove conclusively Guyana has reverted to the garden variety crimes that the ordinary cop on the beat can handle. Now, some might say if this is the new metric for measuring “serious armed crimes”, then all the Police have to do is keep the SWAT in bed . And voila!!!…NO SERIOUS CRIMES!!!

But seriously folks – this Eyewitness really thinks the COP should get real. This paper posed the case of the Sterling invasion in which a bunch of highly armed gunmen invaded one of the largest businesses in the country. This was just a stone’s throw from the Providence Police Station. They killed a guard and then escaped without even a shot fired at them – and are still out there un-apprehended. And the SWAT wasn’t necessary??

So do we wait until, say, several local cops who aren’t trained to handle this situation get killed either by the criminals or their own cross fire, and then we say, “SWAT go swot them”??!!!

….once you’re Opposition
Dr Clive Thomas was one of the few Guyanese to have an international reputation in economics – apart from Dr Walter Rodney – who, incidentally, was a historian. But we guess the latter’s “How Europe Underdeveloped Africa” can be seen as a historically inclined take on political economy. But Thomas’ career since 1992 proves how the politics of a divided society can warp the thinking of even a fella who had serious credentials.

At the game changing elections of that year, Dr Jagan offered him the position of being his Prime Minister. He didn’t refuse – but his erstwhile comrades in the WPA did. And as they say, the rest is history. What might’ve been, eh?? But remaining in the Opposition, Thomas broke ranks with Marxists like Rodney and adopted a racial lens for his critiques. He had to march with the rest of the Opposition.
Right now he’s regurgitating his paranoid “criminalised state” claims for the elections “silly season”!

….by the US carpetbagger
Dr Dr Dr Philip Mozart Thomas had a rude awakening this Wednesday. We’d have thought after ROH Corbin showed him some moves back in 2002, he’d have been a bit more cautious.

As Burnham once drawled, “We’s be black, but we’s not stupid!!”

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Boot strapping…

…“civil society”

Ever so often, the countries that “know better” and tutor us into becoming “civilised”, redefine our society so that we can “get with the programme”. THEIR programme of course!! Which has to be periodically updated. For instance, in our fathers’ time, our society was divided into those who were “communist” and those who weren’t. The latter were the “good guys” and were given mucho dollars by the Americans to make sure the former got their comeuppance.

In those days, a fella by the name of Peter D’Aguiar knew a good thing when he saw one, and launched an “anti-communist” crusade with funding from folks in the good old US of A. When the old communist bogeyman just rolled over and expired, and there were no “public enemy # 1” to rile up the folks against a government the US didn’t like, they suddenly decreed that “all governments” were suspect. Even those elected in the democratic fashion they’d insisted was what those nasty communists were denying us!

To take on any such government that might’ve gotten on their bad side – for reasons they “educate” us about – the US encouraged the formation of “Non Governmental Organisations” NGOs – which they funded through their Government Funded Organisations (GFOs)!!! For example, there’s this US GFO called USAID, which funds NGOs in Guyana such as the Blue CAPS, SASOD or this motley crew calling itself the Guyana National Council on Public Policy (GNCPP). These NGOs work in what the US calls “Civil Society” – which is all people outside of Government.

From the definition of these NGO organisations then, the Government’s the “bad guy”. Now if it’s one thing that’ll get folks to sign up with an organisation, it’s the promise of feeding at the trough of free money. And as we can see…from the old-time “hard guava” days of groups opposed to the PNC who had to scrounge around for lunch much less full-page ads in the paper, in the past couple of years, it’s literally been raining NGOs – for women, for youths, for Gays, for fornicators or whatever. Why in Cuba even Hip Hop artistes could get funding!! And we did get some Punk Band, didn’t we??All you had to say was you’re opposed to the Government.

Heavily funded, being able to host fancy conferences with hors d’oeuvres and wine, fly off to exotic foreign locales and generally living high off the hog is the lot of the NGO.

Who said that regime change couldn’t be fun?? Can’t tell that to the US and its NGOs!!

…nut job

And that brings us to Phillip Mozart Thomas and his Guyana National Council on Public Policy (GNCPP) which held its long promised Conference yesterday. It was supposed to launch the Mother of All Civil Society Organisations in Guyana!! From today no other NGO can speak for anyone – Thomas now straddles the NGO world like a colossus. And who’s this fella?

Well, even his hired flack says he’s eccentric even as he claims “He has Doctorates, Masters and Degrees from various American schools, including the National Defence University, National War College, Berne University, Mercer University School etc, etc, etc). When contacted, every one of these institutions denied that Thomas had even crossed their doors, much less earned degrees.

Close readers of the news would remember that this Thomas went to the CCJ to vitiate the 2006 elections and went to the local High Courts to stop the 2011 elections.

But the $500 million (Was USAID that generous??) he claims to have (and this is only for “starters”) will certainly get some nuts to be at his side.

We’ll see who these are today.

…Lalloo Ram

We’re betting dollars to donuts Lalloo Ram’s gonna be there! Has there ever been a photo-op this pervert’s missed?? He’ll try to pluck the dollars from Thomas with his tweezers?? Then maybe not. That’s public money not PUBIC money!!

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Thinkpol…

…in Guyana

In George Orwell’s dystopian “1984″, we learn about the “Thought Police” – otherwise known as “Thinkpol”. They’re supposed to ferret out transgressions that are only being THOUGHT about.

Don’t ask us “how?”…that’s not the point. The point Orwell was making about the “totalitarian imperative” is there are folks who’re so convinced of their “rightness”…they’ll try to silence contra opinions by whatever means necessary. Think Nazis and gas chambers.

Orwell was spoofing totalitarian Governments…but this urge to deny the freedom of thought to others is alive and kicking in lots of folks outside of Government. And not surprisingly, you’ll find most of them doing their darndest to get into Government – to have the full apparatus of the state to silence “the other”.

Take this fella Ruel Johnson who still doesn’t accept he’s much too long in the tooth to play the enfant terrible. He just comes across as mean, petty, spiteful – and gauche. Look at his recent attack on Ian McDonald.

Now McDonald isn’t this Eyewitness’ favourite cup of tea. But hey!! Whatever drivel or doggereled opinion he wants to put out…it’s a free country no?? Well, not if you ask Johnson.

Prodded on why he didn’t leave his papers to UG rather than UWI, McDonald replied, “I do not believe, even with all the efforts being made, that Guyana has a matching facility.” Now, how dare he say that!!?? What the heck does McDonald mean by mentioning “all the efforts being made”?? Doesn’t he know that not an iota of effort was expended to improve Guyana’s archival capacity??

And even if he knows different, how dare he express the thought in print?? If Johnson and posse had the equipment McDonald’s brain would’ve been fried the moment he had that treasonable thought!

But going even further, Johnson demanded that we forget the “sterling literary credentials” of McDonald . We should note “the social, and perhaps moral, limitations of his (McDonald’s) interventions into the reality of life and politics in Guyana.”

Whew…that’s quite a mouthful!! What “reality of life in Guyana”? That he cobbled Johnson’s first book of poems and entered him for the Guyana Prize?? That he was silent when the soon bloated-headed Johnson ripped viciously into his wife and the mother of his child on social media??

Politics?? That McDonald didn’t intervene with the Ministry of Culture when Johnson demanded to be made Editor of the Guyana Press at $3 million??

The moral?? We’ll give a rain check on that. That litany will be longer than the collected works of Karl Marx. And as tedious!!

…on prorogation

Ahhh…how low has the mighty fallen!! The WPA’s holding a symposium on “prorogation” and they can’t field all the speakers from their ranks?? They’d better be careful – they might be taken for that Thomas fella – with more letters behind his name than the dictionary – but unable to get a single invited reputable person to be at his side!!

And he doesn’t even have Kuh Kuh Beh!!

So guess who’s accompanying Dr Clive Thomas at the head table?? Carl Greenidge!!! The same Greenidge Thomas skinned up so badly when he (Greenidge) was PNC’s Finance Minister – he was laughed out of every gathering of progressive economists since!

We’d sure like to hear what this enemy of Walter Rodney will say about “prorogation” as a political weapon!! So while he was basking in Brussels, Greenidge was boning up on political strategy – as well as Brussels Sprouts!??

Of the third panellist, the less said the better – Chris “Lalloo” Ram. What can a 70-year old, fresh out of law school, say about “the legality of prorogation”?? It can be “tweezed”??

…on prosecution

Mook Lall knows which limb to jump on – Lalloo Ram’s. That publicity hound’s only reason to be at the side of Lall on the latter’s protest in front of the DPP’s was to get his photo in a paper!!

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Predators…

…in civil society
Since he’s come into the business of commenting on the follies and foibles (and occasionally, the good deeds) of the movers and shakers (or who’ll like to be!!) in Guyana, this Eyewitness has shied away from getting too personal. One has to draw a line somewhere – and a veil over some things, no?? But there comes a time – or an issue – when you’ve got to overcome your reservations and call a spade a spade.

The issue that’s gotten this Eyewitness quite riled up is the reaction of the aforementioned “movers and shakers” to “domestic violence”. As with one voice, they all denounce it most vehemently. And that’s the first tip off. The “one voice” reaction suggests that the denunciation might just be shouted because it’s politically correct. Who’s gonna be FOR domestic violence??

But wasn’t it said somewhere, “Not all who shout, “Lord!” “Lord!” will enter into the Kingdom of Heaven??” And a recent letter in the Chronicle conclusively showed that some of the most vociferous denunciations of domestic violence are among the worst practitioners of that particular brand of cruel and inhuman treatment. The fella in question is Lalloo Ram – no stranger to this column because of his insistence of preaching what Guyanese OUGHT to be doing on every issue under the sun.

After reading the letter and taking its challenge to examine the scanned copy of the divorce petition (uncontested) by Lalloo’s wife on the worldwide web, this Eyewitness now understands why Lalloo has NOT ONCE commented on the burning issue of “domestic violence” – over which the entire country’s been transfixed for years!! He’s been one of the most vicious and sadistic domestic abusers this Eyewitness has had the misfortune to read about.

We will pass over the multiple infidelities of Lalloo to his wife. While this inflicts extreme, mental anguish to a spouse, it’s unfortunately quite common in Guyana among men who “have to prove they are men”. They feel by paying some poor woman for sex, their manhood is “proven”. How pathetic!! We won’t even mention the verbal abuse of Lalloo calling the mother of his children “a whore”. But what got to this Eyewitness was that the wife “was beaten and kicked so badly (by Lalloo) she started bleeding”. Is this being “a man”?

The children weren’t spared – neither from the verbal or physical beatings. The man who’s championed the right to sexual orientation taunted one son about being an “anti-man”, making the boy suicidal.
Shouldn’t Lalloo remove the moral planks from his own eye before he preaches morality to the nation??

…getting awards
The Muckraker reported that its publisher Mook Lall received a trophy – one of those gaudy plastic cups they give to students – from the Pi55 Doctor of Guyana – Ramayya of the AFC. Now we’re not surprised the AFC handed this out to the Mook. They know the poor fellow never got an award in his life!! Like they say with lotto – you got to play it to win it, no??!!
And of course, they’ve got to reward the Mook who carries the press releases via which their fearless leader Ramjattan wages his “revolutionary” actions!!

But surely the Mook knows what’s in the cup. Ramayya’s the fella who’s famous for prescribing “cow pi55″ as a cure for every disease known to man and then some!! Hence his name – the “Pi55 Doctor”!! But we suspect that the Mook eagerly accepted the cupful of pi55 because he hasn’t been able to stop weeping ever since he said he was “threatened”!!
Ramayya assured him that if he drinks the cupful of pi55 is one draught, his weeping will cease!!

…and pubic plucking
We saw in the papers that Lalloo’s fond of asking others personal questions. We’d like to ask him if it’s true he can only “perfor m” if he’s plucking his partner’s pubic hair. Ouch!!! What a pervert!!!

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“Fat” talk is cheap…

…says Granger
If we didn’t know better, we’d have thought David Granger made a “snap”. He said all these proposals about constitutional change flying all over the place – is nothing more that “beer garden” talk!!! He was referring to the politician and ex-Company Secretary (Nigel Hughes), the (ex??) businessman (Yesu Persaud) and of course political gadfly and pot-salt Lalloo “Suspenders” Ram.
We can understand Granger’s dissing Hughes (upstart hanging on to his wife’s coat tails!!!) and Lalloo (“wannabe politician without the necessary cojones) but Persaud??!! Hey …with elections nigh upon him, isn’t he going to need DDL’s contribution?? Even though Ramjattan and Nagamootoo, Granger’s bête noire who want to oust him from the Opposition Leader’s saddle, also are high pushing the Constitutional Change panacea, Granger couldn’t possibly be dissing THEM. For that he’d have referred to “rum shop talk”!!!
Even though most of the spoutings from the chatterati are to show they are “high thinkers” …all it does is make them look “high”. We just can believe that a group of grown men would think that by making scribblings on paper they can solve Guyana’s political problems!! Just for a start, a good bit of these changes will need a 65 percent majority. Meaning that the PPP/C will have to be brought aboard.
Now how the hell is this going to be done, when every single proposal has to do with getting the PPP/C out of office?? What’s in it for the PPP/C?? Then how silly can the Changers be to suggest they’ll get the ball rolling by clipping the powers of the President! Wasn’t this done in 2000??? Did Hughes just wake up from a deep slumber?? But more importantly, forget the PPP/C: how’re they gonna persuade Granger??
The man was a General for Chrissake!! If you think the powers of the President are over the top after the 2000 changes, you haven’t read ANY army manual on Generals!! Those fellas are like GREEK Gods!! Unlike the President of the country, Generals can shoot their charges LEGALLY for disobeying their orders. Granger’s never going to agree to a reduction of the powers of the Presidency once he thinks there’s even the SLIGHTEST chance of him slipping into that position.
But this bunch of Constitution Changers are just literally a bunch of wankers. Or at best a bunch of armchair politicians. The sad truth is, they can change all laws they want – including the Constitution.
But since the Opposition politicians have shown they don’t give a damn about Guyana – voters KNOW it’s all about getting THEIR hands of power. Bun them!!!

…by AFC newbie
Out of the mouth of babes!!! A new Executive Member of the AFC, who like most of the others won his spurs by writing fervent letters to the press, wrote another that’s VERY revealing. On the letter-writing qualification – don’t forget that leader Ramjattan told Granger he doesn’t need to show up at Square of the Revolution to protest. HIS revolution will be waged through letters and press releases!!
Anyhow back to the AFC newbie’s letter. Fella confessed he “was astonished when Ramjattan talked about corruption”!! We understand. He obviously knows how corrupt Ramjattan is and doesn’t think such a character should speak about corruption! The best he could say about Nagamootoo was his “sparkling opening speech”. Nagamootoo’s erstwhile comrades in the PPP/C always said that all Nagamootoo could do was “talk”!! Confirmation!!
Nigel Hughes talked about his obsession – Constitutional Change. But who was it that dismissed this as “beer garden talk”??
The newbie was understandably confused and referred to Cathy Hughes as “Sister”. Maybe he thought he’d joined the WPA?

…with GPSU ultimatum
Someone pointed out that the GPSU’s “48 hour” ultimatum had expired and the Government hadn’t done anything. Wasn’t it the GPSU that had to do something to be spared from being dubbed, “Christmas blow blow”??

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Changes…

…in Agricultural development??
At long last, it seems our large scale agricultural development might be taking off.
Trinidad confirmed responsibility for doling out 10,000 acres in Canje to their own farmers to produce items for export to their country. The Trinidad Minister of Agriculture’s here again – but now with a team that’s supposed to “spec out” the land.
But this Eyewitness has to be frank…he’s really not convinced that much will come out of this initiative. It’s not that he’s a pessimist, but the Trinis do seem to be quite confused about what they’re trying to achieve. When the Minister came some months ago, he said that the goal was to “reduce the food imports into Trinidad”.
Now there’s nothing wrong about that. But the last time we looked, Guyana was not part of Trinidad – so how the heck will the products shipped from Guyana not count as “imports” into Trinidad?? The Trinis also aren’t clear about the involvement of locals in the venture. While we Guyanese may snicker about how tiny Trinidad is, in reality, there’s lots of prime agricultural land available that’s not being utilised.
Less than a decade ago, the former PNM Government of Patrick Manning launched 18 “mega farms” in Trinidad with the same goal of “reducing food imports”. They’ve all gone belly up – even after the Government pumped millions into them. The problem with the effort was that Trinidad’s lost its farmer “class” but – unlike what’s happened over in Suriname – they refuse to allow the free movement of Guyanese into their country to get the job done.
In Guyana, the Trinis don’t seem to have engaged many – if at all, any – locals and unless they do this pronto they won’t even be able to get off the ground. Also, it doesn’t seem to have dawned on the Trinis that the land they’ve been offered is literally virgin territory, which has to be drained, and then irrigated for those crops that’ll be cultivated in the dry season.
In the estimation of this Eyewitness, the Trinis are trying to reinvent the wheel. The Jagdeo Initiative – under which the land was offered to all Caricom countries at dirt cheap rates – Trinidad was asked to address one of the eight identified “constraints” – finance. All Trinidad needed to do is to establish a fund that would finance large scale agriculture in Guyana.
By accepting proposals on products for which Trinidad would provide the markets, they could’ve had their cake and eat it too.
Its not too late.

…in multi-racial politics
Few were actually fooled when the AFC – launched in 2005 – boasted they were introducing “multi-racial” politics in Guyana. How?? Well because they SAID so!! And that the two top guns from the PNC and PPP/C were respectively “African” and “Indian”!!
The irony that EVERY political party (with the exception of GUMP in the 1960s and ROAR in the 2000s) has made the same claim – with the same technique – fronting persons from the various ethnic groups – seems to’ve been lost on the group.
But recently, the mask has been ripped from the AFC’s pretensions when the party was invited by the African-dominated APNU to send their top leaders to a meeting. The AFC’s Indian leaders – Ramjattan and Nagamootoo – sent the African ones and studiously stayed away. For once they admitted they did so because they would be “dead meat” if their Indian supporters saw them on an “African” stage. Multiracial?? Ha!!!
Recently, this paper asked non-Indian AFC’s Treasurer Dominic Gaskin how he could be a member of a party that shunned Africans.
Exhibiting severe cognitive dissonance, Gaskin stoutly denied what his leader had explicated announced!!

…in presidential power?? Nope!
After complaining about “abuse” of presidential power …more specifically the use of the prorogation prerogative, David Granger turned a complete somersault. He now says when it comes to clipping presidential powers…the “people” should pronounce!!

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The law is not a ass…

…on the budget
Being informed that the law assumed a wife acts under the direction of her husband, the henpecked Mr Bumble muttered, “If the law supposes that, the law is a ass – a idiot.”
Hearing of the latest move by Opposition Leader David Granger to take the Government to the Courts for “unauthorised spending” made this Eyewitness mutter, “If Granger supposes that, then he is a ass – a idiot!!”
We won’t even speculate whether the Courts’ll go along with Granger. That body, having already shown it’s not “a ass”, will not allow the Opposition to make the highest law of the land, the Constitution, into one? All Guyanese know what’s going on here – so maybe Granger also thinks we’re all collectively “one big ass”.
Back in 2012, the Opposition slashed the Budget. The Government took the matter to the courts – WHICH IS THE FINAL ARBITER OF THE CONSTITUTION. The Courts said in no uncertain terms, “No can do!!”
The Government went back and spent the slashed funds they’d requested. In 2013, the same rigmarole was repeated with the same result. And here in 2014, the Opposition thinks if they do the identical thing they’ll have a different outcome? A very smart fella named Einstein said that this kind of thinking indicated “insanity”.
But in 2014, there’s a twist to the Opposition’s action that moves it from sublime idiocy to the ridiculous. In this case the Government was returning to the Assembly with a “Statement of Excess” on what they’d spent. The Opposition – however, made it pellucid that they were going to immediately move their No-Confidence Motion to bring the Government down. They were not going to pass on the spent excess.
Now if the Opposition’s motion had passed, would they’ve been penalised for “allowing” the money to be spent?? They didn’t give a damn. But now that the President prorogued Parliament after learning no Bills – including the Statement of Excess – would be considered, the Opposition’s going to the Courts!!
What makes this even more idiotic is that even after prorogation, the President pleaded for the Opposition to return to the Assembly to dialogue and consider the Bills the Opposition absolutely refused.
And are now going to the Courts to seek what?? A judgement by the Courts reversing its two previous decisions?? On what grounds?? That the Opposition’s an ass??
The Courts don’t need to do anything. The populace is totally conversant with the asininity content of the Opposition!

…on education
The Minister of Education’s being pilloried by sections of the media for choosing to send her daughter to a private nursery school rather than the public one that’s under her charge. Now let this Eyewitness say right up front that the Minister is a citizen of this country who has all the rights of any other citizen. Including the right to decide where her child can be educated.
With that said, we think the Minister erred in trying to justify her decision on some other grounds. Like the one where she claims her daughter was one month below the minimum age and she’d be accused of abusing the system if the child was admitted. Really??? And that now that the child had reached the minimum age, if the child’s transferred, she’ll have to be “put back” a year.
She should know that there’s a system of review by the Education Department of the child can show she’s above grade achievement, she can be admitted then be given “accelerated promotion”.
And please Ms Minister. Don’t blame the husband. Doesn’t cut any ice with the voters.

…on elections
Granger wants election results to be declared the morning after elections. Is he willing to amend the law to have some form of electronic transmission of the Statement of Polls from from places like the Pakaraimas??
Or is he setting the stage for protests when the AFC/PNC/APNU coalition loses ignominiously??

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Tough love…

…for Granger
It’s the Christmas season, and your Eyewitness was told he should ease up on the “Rod of Correction” a bit and spread some “peace and love”. Out with the Old Testament and in with the New. Redemption time and all of that! Your Eyewitness reminded his Editor that while he understands the request, the best he could do was “tough” love”!

So what can your Eyewitness say about the negotiations Granger and Ramjattan are locked in – about who’ll be leader of the grand union the shifty-eyed one proposed. Right off the bat, your humble Eyewitness will announce loud and clear: “AIN’T GONNA BE NO COALITION BETWEEN THE AFC AND THE PNC!!” Ramjattan’s just yanking Granger’s chain…and not just to get a rise out of him!

Ramjattan knows the moment he signs on the dotted line – to use his own words – he’s “dead meat”. Nothing’s changed since last month when he reached that conclusion and refused to share the stage with Granger at the Square of the Revolution, has it?? The votes in Berbice were rustled away from the PPP/C in 2011 by Ramjattan and Nagamootoo via one of the most racist bottom-house campaigns ever waged in Guyana.

Even that dyspeptic duo – infamous for being complete strangers to the truth – won’t be able to sell a coalition with the PNC to those folks after the number they did on the PNC in general and Granger in particular. Surely Berbicians aren’t all suffering from mass amnesia to forget that Nagamootoo and Ramjattan assured them that “the PPP/C was becoming just like the PNC – thieves, hooligans and rapists”.

So unless Ramjattan wants to be annihilated at the upcoming polls, there’s no way in hell he’ll tie the knot with Granger. And that’s why he made an offer that Granger can only refuse!! But there’s another reason why Granger had to be strung along. By now the African-Guyanese members of the AFC are sensing they’re being take for a ride by Ramjattan and Nagamootoo, and are only being used as “window dressing”.

Ramjattan’s frantically trying to show them the AFC isn’t going ALONE to the polls because of his anti-African racism – but because Granger rebuffed him. The old rubbing of his do-doo on another’s bamzie!

So in the spirit of our newfound “tough love”, your Eyewitness’ suggesting to Granger to call Ramjattan’s bluff. Accept Ramjattan’s demand that he be leader of the coalition.

Ramjattan’s gonna back out so fast, you’d think he’s greased lightning!!

…for a business tycoon
No one doubts Yesu Persaud’s our business tycoon par excellence. On the back of the billions the EU provided, he spearheaded a successful upgrading of Guyanese rum. The Eyewitness noted that he really dished out some “tough love” to Prezzie about the latter’s “regime”. Was it because Prezzie turned up “casual” at the “black-tie” Visa-launching affair at the Peg??!!

But our own “tough love” for the normally avuncular tycoon has to do with his claim that “Guyana and South Korea were on par in the 1980s, but we’ve lagged and S Korea has bloomed since”. Now that’s not fair because it ain’t true. S Korea actually experienced its phenomenal growth from 1964 (when we were on par) to 1980 – the same period in which the PNC destroyed our economy.

So that when the PPP/C took over in 1992, our per-capita GDP was $807 versus S Korea’s $8140!! And even though since then our numbers grew by 227 per cent compared to S Korea’s 125 per cent, we started from such a low (PNC) base we just couldn’t catch up!
In the New Year, may we all be “transparent”!!

…on reporting
The Muckraker felt Fip Motilall’s DUI was newsworthy. So surely they won’t mind us mentioning his house slave stepped into some dog poo when he came out of the Saffon Street Zoo last night. Eeuuuuu!!!

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Funny business…

…by Mook Lall
Ever since NICIL announced back in 2010 that through its Atlantic Hotel Inc SPV it was bringing in a Marriott to Guyana through the Public Private Partnership (PPP) route, the MuckrakerKN and its owner launched a vicious and sustained attack to derail the project. The objections flew fast and furious.
Guyana couldn’t sustain a five-star, internationally branded hotel with 160 rooms. It didn’t need another hotel – even a “no star” one – period. We couldn’t even fill the present rooms we had. They’d be too “pricey”. The casino that’d be part of the “entertainment complex” was going to exclude Guyanese. And that Jagdeo was only building the Marriott to “destroy the Pegasus” next door – because it was owned by a financier of the AFC!!
When President Ramotar pointed out that the business class Guyana’s trying to attract in the oil, gold and manufacturing industries demand top class, branded amenities, the Muckraker mocked him mercilessly.
What the Mook didn’t want to admit however, is the real reason for “bad mouthing” the Marriott was that it was the brainchild of then President Jagdeo. It’s been as clear as day for the longest while that the Mook is so consumed with hatred for Jagdeo that he’s gone “bassidy”.
Or, as the Americans would say “absolutely, stark raving bonkers”!! A further proof of this latter, sick condition is the recent announcement by the Mook that he’d told Finance Minister Ashni Singh the he, Mook Lall, would like to be a minority shareholder in the Marriott!!!
Can you believe it???!! Now a fella who’s sold shallot, smuggled bodies – and god-knows-what-else – across US borders doesn’t shell out his money unless he sees a “sure thing”. If the Mook’s willing to invest in the Marriott, you can bet your bottom dollar that “there’s gold in Marriott”!!!
And now he’s complained Ashni’s locking him out of a “good thing” and keeping it for his buddies. (You won’t be surprised that somewhere in the the Mook’s ramblings, the name of Jagdeo had to crop up, are you??)
But dear readers, this is the end game for all “smart flies”: they’re stuck fast in some bovine’s backside. The Mook’s desperate with the US doling out visas to every Tom, Dick and Harillall (and their wives and pickneys!). The “backtrack market” has collapsed worse than the stock market in 1929!!!
But don’t expect him to eat humble pie and apologise to Jagdeo for bringing in the Marriott. The hate’s also consumed is conscience.

…from Vieira
Tony Vieira keeps popping up like the bad penny he is. He was pulled up by the PPP/C for the disinformation campaign on the radio frequency allocation process he embarked on as part of the propaganda wing of the PNC.
We understand the fella’s got to repay the PNC for allowing him (and fellow traveller Rex McKay) to have a monopoly on TV broadcasting, back in the day. Can you imagine the amount of money the wanker raked in then?? But does he have to lie so much??
The wanker’s claiming that RGI wasn’t “granted” a licence from the Courts. Of course a Court doesn’t “grant” licences – but it can ORDER that refusal for the licence be rescinded! As the Chairman of QA (the parent company of RGI) said, “We purchased VCT and all its operations in June 2009. This included its rights to a radio licence, for which it had applied since 1993.
“The Appellate Court in October 2009 directed the NFMU “to consider and determine VCT’s application for a radio broadcast licence.”
Which part of this Vieira doesn’t understand??

…and being down and out
Vieira says the US$1 million he got for VCT isn’t a “hefty sum”. The poor fellow “proves” his point by whining that he’s forced to rent a home in Prashad Nagar! Imagine that!! Pass a hat around in Plastic City.

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Guilty conscience…

…by PNC/APNU on democracy

The PNC/APNU wore black yesterday as they marched up and down on Shiv Chanderpaul Drive in front of OP under the direction of their militant (military?) leader David Granger. Even he slipped off his trademark green garb (reminds him of his old camouflage?) and draped himself in black. Your Eyewitness, who happened to pass by, thought the Taliban had descended into our (once) fair land!!

Granger said he and his followers (Roopnarine actually showed up!!) were mourning the “death of democracy”!!! One could’ve forgiven the hyperbole if the symbolism wasn’t so heavy handed! Couldn’t Roopnarine – with all that literary background – give them a hint?? What next?? A hooded Granger wielding the scythe of death?? Please!! if we can’t be understated like the British who tutored us, let’s not be so quite over the top.

After all, it’s more than a little rich for the successor of Forbes Burnham – as leader of the PNC – to be complaining about “the death of democracy”. If democracy survived its repeated and sustained rape at the hands of the PNC for 28 years, that should’ve given Granger and his partisans a hint of the depth to which the roots of democracy had penetrated our soil. It was down but never out!

How did the PNC try to kill democracy?? Shall we count the ways?? Naah!!! That’ll take more pages than War and Peace!! Just to cite rigging elections, launching death squads, controlling unions, murdering political opponents – of which Rodney was just the most high profile – is just the tip of a very large iceberg. We can do just as well by taking a peek at the PNC’s last Congress – when the leader was going to be “elected”. It ended with the entire Linden delegation and Aubrey Norton stomping out.

Carl Greenidge groaned, “The Party has arrived at a very sad moment”. And Norton himself, pledging fealty to the PNC as an institution, bit his tongue and said mildly that the voting process was “extremely flawed”. But just as democracy survived Burnham, it’ll survive Granger – not without, however, the usual quirks that history throws up.

As far as plotting and scheming to subvert democracy, Granger will “meet his maker” as he negotiated with Khemraj Ramjattan on the coalescing of the AFC and the PNC. The AFC started out with two “co-leaders”….Trotman has only just been able to slink back as an ordinary Executive! Ramjattan, with all his blunders, landed on his feet!!

Granger should be happy if he emerges from the negotiations with his buckta on!! But democracy will be alive and well…outside the coalition.

…from GPSU

Imagine the bauxite clerical workers went out on strike and all their union was able to get for them from the very profitable company Bosai was 6.5 per cent!! Even after justifying their original demand for 7.5 per cent by showing productivity increases and such things. And yet when the Government awarded the Public Servants the same, Granger had the temerity to call it a “freck”!!

But unlike Granger, it seems the leader of the GPSU must’ve had a guilty conscience about how generous the Government was being, after his ranting and raving. He’s now quiet rather than taking Granger’s bait to join him in the streets. Yarde isn’t blind…he can see the signs and read them. The days of the unions are gone.

More importantly, he knows that even after the GPSU was the spear-arm of the PNC back in the day, it’s never been treated as good as by the PPP/C!

…on torture

Back in 2010, after we had the unfortunate incident of a teen being tortured by some Police at Leonora, the US Embassy lectured us on how “concerned” they were. With the revelations of the widespread and most horrendous degraded acts of torture by the CIA revealed, shouldn’t our Government express OUR “concern”??

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