The WPA no longer enjoys the support it used to enjoy during the Burnham era. I must admit the WPA was a focused unit during those times but they were intimidated and battered into submission by the powers that be. Though the party enjoyed popular support from the masses during that time, their leadership failed to strategically maximize on that support to secure a tactical political base. The WPA’s leadership appeared strong but in reality it was a group flirting with unchartered political waters which later proved to be detrimental to their survival. Their political intelligence was zero and that enhanced the PNC’s ability to infiltrate their highest forum, unchallenged.
Today, the WPA after many attempts to be recognized as a sabre for the working class in Guyana stands staggering, badly wounded but not willing to die without their last fight. The party holds to its bosom the conviction that Walter Rodney was assassinated by the PNC. So badly are they wounded that shock and disorientation have stepped in and now they are going to sleep with the former enemy in a so-called Joint Opposition Political Parties (JOPP), thinking they can garner lost political opportunities. Some advice to them: even when a tiger gets old it does not lose its stripes.
Our historical voting patterns do not show any signs that JOPP has the capacity or the capability of shattering the PPP’s political base, even if it were to somehow influence the AFC. In total, they are well below the required poll support to make a difference, and their dependence on crossover votes is an illusion. If we reflect on Guyana’s last four election results which in summary show:
So the question is: What can the WPA demand of JOPP with this record? What can any small party demand of JOPP? From records I just reproduced JOPP shows very little probability as a credible election challenger for the PPP/C.
There are other factors that make the illusion of JOPP unseating the PPP/C in the 2011 elections a vapour of a dream. There have been crossovers of party members to other political parties and these have weakened small parties’ electioneering potential. Hardest hit are ROAR and WPA, with the AFC enjoying the core support from ROAR and WPA crossovers. The PPP meanwhile has been able to effectively dismantle the WPA’s Amerindian machinery that broke the back of the PNC in 1992, and 1997 and has welcomed those into the PPP/C. History will reveal the tale of PNC dominance over Amerindian stakeholders until the WPA came on stream and effectively destroyed the stranglehold of the PNC. Amerindian support propelled the WPA’s entry into parliament in 1992; surprisingly this part of history has not been recognized. It cannot be taken for granted that the WPA and the TUF to a lesser extent, still have electioneering machinery.
Taking the 2006 election results to form the basis for the argument as to how well JOPP can perform at the 2011 elections is a dismal thought, even if the AFC were brought into the equation.
So there is no worry about the WPA demanding from JOPP more than it can chew – which is very little. One cannot contribute an ounce’s worth and demand a pound.
(Name and address provided)