The PPP would obtain fewer votes in another election

Dear Editor,

The PPP might even lose a majority and will likely obtain fewer votes and a lower percentage of the overall votes if it calls another election. Firstly, there has been no change in personnel in government. The usual suspects like Messrs Rohee and McCoy have been joined by new ones like Messrs Juan Edghill, Ganga Persaud and Phillip Bynoe. Nothing’s changed when the Guyanese people and PPP supporters expected serious change. Secondly, Donald Ramotar’s government has delivered nothing of substance in the three months since the election. Thirdly, Mr Ramotar will have to lead the PPP into a snap election. He does not inspire and will be exposed. Fourthly, the election season, current political temperature and recent events such as strikes in Indian communities over sugar and floods have shown that many Indians are not buying the PPP’s fear-driven agenda. The PPP is now facing a growing phenomenon of Indian militancy against its corruption, waste, incompetence and failures, something it never expected.

Fifthly, the PPP has been smeared and scarred with more scandals and secret deals since the election. From Amaila Falls to the airport extension to the Marriot project to the concession of 425 square miles of Guyana’s land to Ansa McAl to produce ethanol without a peep to the nation, the secret deals continue. PPP supporters and Guyanese in general are disgusted with these events. Sixthly, the Guyanese public actually likes this new wave of accountability and transparency coming from Parliament and will be disinclined to change it. Seventh, the PPP is facing the harsh truth of demographics. Its support has progressively dwindled from 220,000 votes in 1997 to 166,000 votes today. A new election before 2016 called by the PPP will bring an even bigger hit when crossover support from Amer-indians and Mixed Races plunges for the PPP. Eighth, every Guyanese man, woman and child will know that the PPP has called an election to get a majority to gain absolute power to hide corruption and to continue its bullying and lack of accountability and transparency. They will repudiate the PPP. The opposition parties will have a field day.

Ninth, the PPP knows that it was afflicted with apathy within its ranks in this election. That apathy will continue. Tenth, the PPP’s party structure is weakening and decaying by the day. The AFC has grabbed some of its best campaigners. The rest will dwindle because the feeding trough is no longer available with a watchdog Parliament. Running an election with a broken and excluded party machinery will backfire. Eleventh, the PPP will be starved of cash in a new election. With this Parliament, there will no longer be state funds to spend during election season as in 2011. If the PPP cannot buy votes, it will suffer a loss of votes. If it cannot bring Destra to ‘wine up’ and hold Presidential Appreciation Days to masquerade like charlatans and hand out cash to communities in all manner of guises during the election, the PPP will lose votes. This will level the playing field for opposition parties. Twelfth, the Parliament will level the media access playing field. When everyone can get their message out just like the PPP in an election, the PPP will lose votes.

Thirteen, when the opposition reforms and fully funds Gecom prior to any election to ensure the chances of rigging are eradicated, the PPP will lose votes. Fourteen, Mr Kissoon pointed to the campaign weaknesses the AFC and APNU/PNC will overcome in a new election. These parties will campaign with far more fervour in areas they did not touch in 2011. They will put polling station observers in every single PPP district. They will lead an assault on the PPP like never before. Without access to the public purse, the PPP will wither.

All of these factors could make for a miserable result for the PPP. It will likely still win the election but it may only get around 155,000 votes. The PPP will likely lose two to three seats in a snap election no matter what so-called pollsters like Vishnu Bisram tell them. The call of the Jagdeoites for a snap election may be setting up poor President Ramotar for failure and for his eventual ouster after the PPP loses again. They will push for his replacement by one of the Jagdeoites. If the PPP really wants majority power, it should stop trying to get it the lazy and arrogant way by calling a new election, trying to rile up people on race and hoping for a miracle. It will get embarrassed and insulted. The PPP has a better chance of getting that majority by cleaning up its act, removing square pegs in round holes, putting competent leadership in place, finding new leadership untainted by the past and reinventing itself in a wave of democracy and transparency.

Yours faithfully,
M Maxwell

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