Mark Benschop will one day be given his due to play an integral role in the reshaping of democracy in Guyana. This country cannot archive its history for the last decade void of an account of Benschop’s social and political struggles and expect that history to be taken seriously.
Let me state, however, that as two fierce independent thinkers, myself and Benschop have had many disagreements in the inbox of cyberspace. To express in Guyanese parlance, ‘ we does stap talk fuh lang time’ also. But we have never had a public spat.
Benschop is one of the new breed of independent thinkers in Guyana who holds more to principles than petty differences. What we share in common is objectivity, a sense of purpose and a passionate commitment to see the end of dictatorship which means the end of the rule of the PPP/C.
Readers must understand, nevertheless, that ending the PPP’s rule will not automatically change the fortunes of the impoverished and suffering masses. Mark Benschop and I understand that in the event of having a new government, if the perception of politics by the masses does not change, if people do not exercise their god-given right to think independently and to analyse situations, etc, without the bridles of partisan political influences and blind directives from politicians, then real democracy will not be realised.
For too long politicians have skilfully guided our thought processes; told us who the enemy within is, who we should avoid and why, etc. Politicians have given us a political slant on almost everything with the singular intention of maintaining their support base. What, however, remains constant is the damning status quo of poverty and misfortune of the masses.
What the present crop of politicians have never asked us to do is bring every one of them into the courts of public scrutiny in a genuine manner and outside of an elections season. We must therefore take that power and hold them accountable, every one of them. There can be no leader in this struggle on the opposition benches who is above scrutiny in the public courts and should refuse, when called by the people, to clarify the state of affairs of the country.
It is therefore the task of us to begin that call and it was against that backdrop that I approached Phillip Bynoe and Mark Benschop to tell the world about what happened on that fateful day in July of 2002, when protesters were killed inside the compound of Office of the President in Georgetown and when he Benschop was wrongly imprisoned on a charge of treason. But most importantly when the struggle for the liberation of the poor and downtrodden suffered a tragic accident that it has never recovered from, and the reasons why. The true reasons why.
From 2002 to date, the PPP have got away with every conceivable wrong they have done to the Guyanese people.
The independent thinker must now ask why? I guess by now, we have begun to realize that many things were just not adding up. Those who have listened to that interview must decide for themselves where the truth can be found. I must admit that it took some persuading for Phillip Bynoe to agree to do that interview. After I had explained the reasons why, he eventually agreed.
I hope when called, Robert Corbin will also come forward in the courts of public scrutiny. I hope when called Khemraj Ramjattan will come forward in the courts of public scrutiny. I pray every one of our opposition politicians will come forward to answer why the PPP was allowed to sell the wealth of Guyana to themselves and friends. Why the PPP was allowed to discriminate against Africans in Guyana. Why the redistribution of wealth is not equitable, etc.
The strategic thinkers will first examine the composition of the opposition confabulation and study its actors/leaders, to determine why there was never any effective representation, no developmental drive in the areas the opposition controlled and why there have been blatant public divisions and fallouts that have adversely affected change. We must recall every abandoned opposition politician who had suffered because of their independence of thought or their courage of conviction to speak out on behalf of the greater good of their party supporters as against the party political grandstanding position.
I listened to the complete interview that was aired on wwwbenschopradio, last evening. My question to Phillip Bynoe is why in his full reluctance to name names he named only Khemraj Ramjattan, considering his emphasis on how important timing is in politics. Could it be that during this period of the AFC’s troubles, he intends to further discredit the leadership of the AFC, by bringing this revelation to fore and publicly naming only Ramjattan?
Phillip Bynoe is a very shrewd politician but he must understand that his being called, is in recognition of what he has to offer in helping restore democracy, the rule of law and the empowering of the poor so Guyana can be a better place.
Anyone who believes that the AFC should sink into the wilderness at this juncture, is someone who wishes to return the PPP as a majority government. However, the truth should not be altered to suit any partisan political objective. But I am mindful of what damage can be done from what, by all intent and purposes, is set out to help in seeing a new and better Guyana.