Suggestions for the President on resolving Linden protests
I don’t know who is advising President Ramotar on the matter of the Linden based protests, but I am pretty sure that he is not being well served. Adam Harris’s commentary of July 29 last is on point.
Yesterday morning when I checked, I observed that the protesters continue to be motivated and quite well organized; they seem to be in for the long haul. It appears that even Lindeners visiting from overseas are willing to deal with the inconvenience as they recognize a just cause.
In the interest of a restoration of normalcy, I am suggesting the following for the President’s consideration as talks continue:
1. Appoint a Tariff Review Committee that will have two non ministerial nominees of the government, two nominees approved by the Region 10 RDC, and a Chairman appointed by Caricom. There must be agreement that the final recommendations of this panel will be binding upon all. In conjunction with the establishment of the panel, announce a return to the status quo rates until the recommendations of the panel are made.
2. Allow the diplomatic community to assist in the establishment of a two-member enquiry panel to investigate the July 18 shooting of protestors. The panel must be non-Guyanese, but both the government, and RDC 10 will nominate attorneys-at-law who will serve in an advisory capacity. This panel must make a public declaration of its findings and recommendations.
3. Arrange to meet with family members of the deceased, those shot and injured, and their nominated community leaders on the issue of compensation.
This need not wait upon pronouncements from the inquiry as the deaths and injuries are not in dispute.
I am of the view that if these immediate actions are taken, we can see a resolution of the protest.
It will then be necessary to resolutely pursue the more long term economic development issues in Region 10, and to work to ensure that come July 18, 2013, this community will be firmly on the road to healing and economic recovery.
(Name and address provided)