Kindly permit me to respond to Dr Randy Persaud’s letter ‘What does Boyo Ramsaroop want?’ published in Kaieteur News and Guyana Chronicle on September 25.
I understand that Dr Randy Persaud in his new-found job is attempting to spin my words. Where in my letter, or in any other writing of mine, did I indicate the PPP owed me something? I understand the need to be in campaign mode from now, given the public’s growing cynicism and negative perception of today’s PPP. However, as a gentleman and scholar, I expect him to back up what he says and not just mouth empty words expecting them to stick as in a schoolyard argument. Dr Persaud now has access to Freedom House. He needs to go there and find out what positions or privileges, I, Boyo Ramsaroop have ever asked for.
Now that the spin has been removed, I can certainly tell Dr Persaud what I wanted from the PPP. I wanted my concerns of corruption, both within and outside of the party that I had witnessed to be addressed. I, and other stalwarts, were also becoming increasingly distressed that older and experienced people like Ralph Ramkarran, Moses Nagamootoo and Philomena Sahoye were not playing the roles we had envisaged for them. We were most alarmed too about the high-handed behaviour and acquisitions of PPP ministers and senior party people. This indicated to us a clear drift away from Dr Jagan’s principles.
Now look at the PPP today. Recently, someone no less than Mr Yesu Persaud questioned the President on whether other companies could be granted the concessions that were given to Queens Atlantic, he was arrogantly talked down to and reference was made to his ignorance of the tax laws. Remember too when Captain Gerry Gouveia questioned the helicopter deal, his concerns were peremptorily dismissed. Most shocking of all to us old stalwarts, was when after the President, at his inauguration in 1999 (when Mrs Jagan handed over to him), said that Mrs Janet Jagan would always be his President, much to our pride, and then rudely dubbed her a private citizen when she objected to the pulling of state ads from Stabroek News. This behaviour that has been well documented (it is therefore no hearsay), and the Queens Atlantic deal itself have revealed most chillingly what the PPP has become today, and this is what we were afraid of.
This is all I wanted – for those concerns to be addressed so that the PPP would remain true to Dr Jagan, and not be brushed aside as if my struggle (and those of other stalwarts) meant nothing!
In his letter too, while we know Dr Persaud holds a PhD, he had no need to exhibit his penchant for complex calculations. I had clearly stated the year that marked the beginning of my political awareness and my age too. Children were part of the revolutionary movements of Gandhi, Dr Martin Luther King Jr and Nelson Mandela. Dr Jagan’s PPP was no different. My father recognised the importance of what has happening and groomed me from an early age, and I in turn did the same. Editor, is this something to ridicule? Dr Persaud’s attempts at spin then took a turn for the downright silly; any student of politics in Guyana, and older folks, know the PPP was the PAC.
Dr Persaud still does not give up on his attempts to spin and refers to Joseph O’Lall being a serving member of the PPP District Committee when he died, when the undisputed point was that O’Lall, despite his service to the PPP, was unceremoniously fired by the President! As an old cricketer of some repute, I would advise Dr Persaud to consider changing his bowling and bowl straight.
Now let’s look at the pace bowlers for the PPP. My son brought to my attention the following slander resulting from my letter and his blogging on http://guyanafriends.com/eve and the Stabroek News website: http://liveinguyana.blogspot.com/2009/09/gay-hard-ramsaroop.html and http://liveinguyana.blogspot. com/2009/09/real-reason-why-boyo-left-ppp.html
The content there cannot be repeated in this letter. As a parent I am enraged, but my son has pleaded with me not to say anything as he says this reveals the PPP for what it has become. I too have nothing to say about this nonsense written about me.
For the record, I have no issue with people changing allegiances, but then they must perform creditably and not bring the PPP into disrepute. Look at Mr Manzoor Nadir – I was one of the people that encouraged him to come over to the PPP and he has performed well. The same cannot be said of Kwame McCoy, Odinga Lumumba and Maniram Prashad. Mr Maniram Prashad is a very ordinary minister at best – Ms Gail Teixeira would have outperformed him one hundred fold! Who can argue with that?
Lest I be misunderstood, the PPP still has hardworking ministers such as Frank Anthony, Robeson Benn, Leslie Ramsammy, Desrey Fox, and the younger ones such as Irfaan Ali and Priya Manickchand (among others). My concern was that there was no one of the calibre of Ramkarran, Nagamootoo and Sahoye to help stay the course of Dr Jagan. You can clearly see today the impact of this.
I am grateful to Dr Jagan for having personally sent me on my Electrical Engineering scholarship to East Germany, where I met my wife, who Dr Jagan also personally helped come to Guyana. I am therefore grateful to the PPP for my wonderful family. Our achievements as a family in the ’80s include our flowers being recognised both at home (including by Dr Jagan and Mr Hoyte) and abroad (winning international awards), and by persons no less then President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Roslyn, who met me, and penned me a personal note expressing admiration for our floral arrangements at Dr Jagan’s inauguration in 1992.
We were never a burden or liability to the PPP. In fact we have always thrown all our resources behind the party. In 1992, both of our IFA trucks and all three of our smaller vehicles driven by my son, wife and me were in the campaign. They were loaned to the party too.
Dr Persaud has every right to his belief the AFC is in a pickle, but as everyone else can see, with all his spinning, he has only managed to tie up himself.