Guyanese have to decide what kind of society they really want – by GHK Lall

Eye On The Issues: Guyanese have to decide what kind of society they really want – by GHK Lall

Posted by: Demerara Waves – January 15, 2017 – by GHK Lall

letters-to-the-editorI noticed the news report of secret balloting by the PPP, and the election of a General Secretary.  The first thoughts were: none of my business and communism.  Then, I read of decentralizing and visions of victory a few years hence, and I came to full attention.  This is my business, and concerns my environment, and a certain minimum standard that is deeply embedded.  So, I share some things that matter.

From my perspective, this country is undergoing radical surgery.  In some instances, there are probing experimental operations in process.  The ongoing discoveries are that national arteries are clogged, muscles atrophied, visions clouded, and weaknesses and malaise all over the body of the state, be it people, or institutions, or outlook, or processes.  

There is some sawing, drilling, excavating, and amputating in progress.  It is rough and painful, but necessary, if not essential, to excise the man-made, patently politically powered rottenness of decades.  The litany is endless: contaminated commerce, polluted people, corrupted citizens, and monstrous mayhem were all significant components of a degrading and grotesquely sponsored and highly touted package.  The public and a country bowed and cowered in fear and shame, if not revulsion.

Editor, amidst this jabbering of victory and return to power, there are a few questions.  Do the people of this nation want to go back to where it was and what have been identified above?  Who among the industrious and the conscientious will embrace a return to the undeniable criminal progress and development (so-called) that was the hallmark of a sleazy era?  Who wants their children to be part of such an ethically barren and destructive landscape?  Remember: it was one of endless weaponry, endless streams of narcotics, and mountains of dirty money that spawned so much injustice, so many monsters.

Just pause and examine the devastation wreaked on this land in so many arenas.  As the talk of victory ricochets with increasing intensity, I repeat the question:  Is this what Guyanese really desire for a way of life, as the culture of their existence?

I would venture that the honorable, the thinking, and the conscientious, despite the weight and pain of current circumstances-corrective circumstances-would want none of what went before; that they brace for the sacrifices that have to be made; that they realize that such sacrifices will indeed have to be made before meaningful change can come; and that, in the due time and season, there will be appreciation for the light that follows.

There is a price; it is the price of progress; of leveling the countless landfills of putridity; of establishing the underpinnings of a real economy; and of journeying towards a place of sanity and decency and dignity.  Again, Guyanese have to decide what it is that they really want for a habitat,and the quality of life to which they aspire, which does not come cheap or quick or easy.

For its part, the government must rise to new visions and the challenge of new ways by being more inclusive, more representative, and more connective.  It can gain converts from the ranks of the educated, the centrists, and the disgusted.  This same government ought to know that its new business allies will return to the old fold at the drop of a hat, and as opportunity beckons.  After all, the torrents of riches are abundant with the old folks, and there is yearning for a repeat of those halcyon unaccountable untaxed times.

Editor, as the calendar unfurls, matters come down to this: it is not what the Americans (or alphabet soup group) would do for Guyana; but what Guyanese want for Guyana, want of Guyana, want from Guyana.  When all things are considered, it is what kind of Guyana these citizens want, and want with a passion.

Is it the dirty cop, of which there were a veritable army?  Is it the costly collapsing project, of which there were countless many?  Is it the siphoned funds, the tax evasions, and state secrecy, of which there was a whole dark impregnable world?  Is it the rankness, the coarseness of preening hubristic masters?  There is more to pinpoint, but I demur.

Today, the tide is turning.  Sometimes, it is turning so slowly, as to be imperceptible.  But it is turning.  On occasion there is concealed disorganized detritus that wound.  Still, the water is shifting.  In spite of disappointments and misgivings, sometimes severe, I will take a slowly turning tide in the hope that it takes away from the endless shoreline of what was bad and wrong and damaging.  And that those same moving waters will carry and bring to better, and a thoroughly different place.

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Comments

  • Ben Khan  On January 16, 2017 at 7:18 am

    Almost every day, I read reports or watch programs about good things that are happening in Guyana. I agree, there have been a lot of progress made in the last eighteen months, and under the new government. I do congratulate them for the good work. What I don’t understand, is why they let the Police sleep so soundly, that they are not aware of what is happening around them. I read recently, that there would be no more corruption in the Police Departments, but right now, there are no signs this is happening. Surely, everyone knows that if the police cannot be trusted, then there would only be chaos and lack of respect in communities. There is always protection for friends of government Ministers, or dignitaries, but not for the Guyanese citizens. No outsiders can see the real Guyana. For 56 years, I have lived in Canada and the UK,, I also worked in Korea and I never had any fear of going out, or traveling alone , whether day or night. It bothers me when I go around in Guyana, for fear of stabbing or being shot at, because I LOOK different to the average Guyanese. How can the government expect us to return and help with development when we are not protected? Am still hoping for more changes in the right places, so that we do not get a change in government at the next election. It would be a shame.

  • Deen  On January 16, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    Totally agree with the above comments.
    In Guyana, there is a high incidence of crimes, including burglaries and police involvement and corruption. Visiting Guyanese are often victims of muggings and burglaries. We see and read about these crimes on the internet. It’s scary. I would certainly like to vacation in Guyana, but obviously it’s too risky.
    Recently, there were few incidents that involved an ex-policeman who was caught burglarizing a home, policemen were charged with stolen items, and there was a gang of about ten members with guns and cutlasses who broke into a money-changer’s home at Corriverton,. They broke down a metal door and barred window and stole cash and jewelry in the $millions. Although neighbors made several calls to the police station, they were very slow in responding and the criminals were long gone when they arrived. Yes, it’s very scary,
    Hopefully, the Guyana government will see the wisdom in improving security in the police force and utilize the GDF if necessary to assist in getting the appalling crime situation under control.
    Businesses including Guyanese at home and those visiting from abroad, need better security. Security is essential not only for government ministers, but for all the people.
    Deen

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