This election season has so much to celebrate and to fantasize about. The political parties this year…has there ever been a time in Guyana’s history when former ‘enemies’ are now comrades in arms? We have the PNC and the WPA (those who are too young to know, many of the WPA activists were jailed, beaten, had their human rights violated during the glory days of the PNC). We have the Alliance For Change – former PNC and PPP members who have renounced their political histories and joined with others. And we have the PPP… at Linden, the forgiveness of that great political sin – treason.. not only the pardon to Mr Bynoe, but as though… a kind of repentance maybe, Mr Bynoe is now on the PPP platform… calling for support for those who he once was accused of trying to overthrow way back in 2002.
And the landscape and the trees and the posts (where there is electricity) – as a young volunteer billboard supporter told me… beautiful billboards, lovely colour, testimony to the wealth in Guyana ($300,000 for one we hear,) and all to be torn down by 28 November. This must be such a relief to the NGOs who have been trying to raise funds for their work that money is available in Guyana. And the people who are trying to burn the billboards… private property must not be damaged. One fantasizes though… questions… are those who are burning the billboards… would they have been burning billboards which would have promoted healthy lifestyles, non-abusive behaviour towards spouses… billboards which counter the alcohol advertisements, billboards which might promote child protection and safety; promoting community spirit, cleanliness. But then we would never know, because such billboards cannot exist because there is never enough money to put them up.
But who knows, given the history lesson… the 2002 treason accused is today’s campaigner; the 1970’s and 1980’s opponents are now our partners… so maybe today’s billboard burners will be the 2016 billboard builders.