I read with concern a certain statement made by Attorney General Anil Nandlall at a ceremony at Highbury, East Bank Berbice, to mark the 176th anniversary of the arrival of indentured labourers in the country.
It is unfortunate that the learned gentleman had to make political comments at such a “sacred” occasion. It seems as if it is the norm by top PPP/C officials to attack the opposition at gatherings which should be considered as “sentimental” because former President Bharrat Jagdeo and current Head of State, Donald Ramotar used the occasions to mark the death anniversary of PPP leader Cheddi Jagan at Babu John, Port Mourant to ridicule the opposition.
While I agree that it is crucial that the Anti Money Laundering Bill should be passed in the National Assembly to prevent Guyana from being blacklisted and to save the country from economic pressure from the United States, the United Kingdom and other developed countries; I do not think it was the right forum for Nandlall to criticize the opposition.
Politicians, especially those in government should be extremely careful what they say at occasions like Indian Arrival Day. It is true that the descendants of Indian immigrants have played and are playing an important role in the country’s development as well as their contributions in the wider world but it should not be highlighted on occasions like May 5 in such a way as to “dwarf” the contributions made by other ethnic groups in the country.
I do not recall on Emancipation Day, politicians highlighted the contributions made by Afro Guyanese to the country’s development, in the educational, medical, religious, cultural, sports and other fields. Therefore, in my view the President’s representative at the Highbury function was way off target.