We need a government of national unity and reconciliation

Dear Editor,

“I have always been committed to the formation in this country of broad coalitions, that work for common goals, and I believe some day this country will see and must see a government of national unity.” – Moses Nagamotoo

Editor, with the sole exception of the PPP, the major opposition parties contesting this year’s election are all in favour of a government of national unity and reconciliation. The PPP stuck in the ‘winner takes all’ politics of the past is slowly becoming irrelevant to the future development in Guyana. Listening to Mr Nagamotoo’s reasons for leaving the PPP, one gets a clear picture of the inner workings of the party, and the small, but very influential clique that controls its every move. I have been saying for a very long time that this is not Cheddi Jagan’s PPP, and Moses has confirmed it. The complaints and allegations that have been levelled at the incumbents are serious.

Cheddi Jagan would never proclaim from a campaign podium that he would interfere with the judiciary. He would never call out a practising attorney by name and proclaim that that individual would never become a senior counsel, (so long as he remains President). The attacks on the press, the withholding of access to the airwaves  the suppression of opposition and dissenting views all speak to a political party void of moral clarity. Mr Nagamotoo laments: “I am amazed that we could have allowed the undermining of a democratic process in a glorious party… to come to this.” One can truly feel his pain, especially after spending most of his adult life as a member of the party. It must be difficult for other party members to witness the current perversions committed in the name of the party their parents and grandparents built. How can you defend the wanton corruption and nepotism? How can you defend the party that seeks the termination of the contracts of University of Guyana lecturers who have a dissenting view? How can you defend a party that can find not one single qualified Guyanese of African descent to represent our country abroad?

It must be difficult these days to be a rank and file member of the PPP. The glory days behind it, the new PPP has become everything its founders fought against. The PPP fought against party being paramount to the government; now the PPP is paramount to the government. The PPP fought for freedom of the press; now as the government they withhold those freedoms. As a party in opposition the PPP said they would have a lean and clean government if elected, but just look at Guyana today and the record of this administration is anything but lean and clean; its more akin to spend and steal.

In its last days the PPP is showing an ugly side that we all must be wary of. As we approach Election Day I ask the remaining members of the PPP and those that are blindly inclined to support them to open their eyes and take a good look at Guyana. After 19 continuous years of PPP governance are they better off than they were? They should look at the enormous wealth that is generated and shared by a very small group of well-connected individuals, and ask why it has not trickled down to them. The high cost of living and the insecurity and fear that are part of everyday life, is this what they voted for 5 years ago? “As much I love my home (PPP) there was just no space for me to help make it accountable. Responsible and free from corruption…” Those are Moses Nagamootoo’s words, and I am sure there are many more like him betrayed and left homeless by PPP.

This year we have a great opportunity to achieve Moses’s dream: the creation of a government of national unity in Guyana. I agree with Mr Nagamootoo, this country will see and must see a government of national unity, but it will only be achieved if we put country first and vote our hopes and not our fears, our future and not our past. A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) has as its fundamental goal the establishment of such a government, and come November 28 we can vote to make the dream a reality.

Yours faithfully,
Mark Archer

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