We must assume that journalistic pride will introduce fairness in the state-controlled media that has over the past few days been critical of the Mayor and Councillors for hindering the purported acting Town Clerk from mobilizing money because they, the Mayor et al, frustrated her unauthorized foray to extract money from poor people for a spot to fly their kites, picnic or sell a few things on Easter Monday.
A group of us rescued a poor woman with four children to feed. She was in tears as a menacing operation sought to collect seven thousand dollars for her to occupy a little 6’x 6’ spot. She, at the time, had not sold $100 dollars; her child’s kite was having difficulty taking to the air, and being harassed by an uncaring officer, Superintendent Langevine who, under Sooba’s orders descended on this poor woman. No mercy – no compassion.
The Town Clerk’s orders were to seize goods if no money was paid; but when the State media and functionaries make this unauthorized act by Sooba into a case, as an example of the Mayor not wanting to collect revenue, we have the height of hypocrisy and dishonesty, or, a classic case of spare the rich and punish the poor, by a government that claimed to be socialist and being a people’s government.
Let us remind the Minister; this purported acting Town Clerk has refused to call a meeting of the Investment and Development Committee. On the agenda was an item to fix a fee for those folks who park their heavy ‘bush’ trucks, excavators etc., on our parapets. To ask again, Guyana Power and Light to pay us a fee for those poles planted on our parapets and other proposals to earn money.
So, the government assails the Mayor for objecting to the harassment of simple folks and collecting of fees from essentially the poor, but not one word when the same office frustrates the Mayor’s efforts to collect from those who utilize our parapets daily.
So, there we have it, a classic case of dishonesty, myopia and an attempt to fool the public.
But, as we have launched the Local Government Campaign, this and more will be told to the victims of all this – the citizens.
Let us hasten Local Government Elections, so the people of Georgetown and elsewhere can get out of this sorry state of affairs.
Let us have LEAD, so that the US can help our people understand the role and part they need play in their respective communities.
One final note, this PPP for years, demonstrated for a “return to democracy’ – in other words, a situation where the majority rules.
In Georgetown, APNU/PNC or, however you wish to put it represents 73% of the voters. Yet inconsistent with their stated policy and beliefs, since 1994, the PPP with only 27% has done everything to control and disfigure the Capital that did not, and will not vote for them.
We must demand Local Government Elections and LEAD.
Hamilton Green, J.P.