Independence Blues – and Gold

-Reminiscences – and Regrets by Alfen

As indicated in the first “instalment”, my “Blues” deal with the disappointments and regrets inherent in the consistent failures of those elected to manage our resources for equitable distribution. (And at those electoral engineers who appropriated electoral will for 23 years of the 50 since 1966.)
I always use little Barbados or smaller Antigua to compare- albeit odiously against our sluggish delayed development. Our economically-challenged “traders” as well as our professionals who migrated to Caribbean Islands, bereft of resources like gold, diamonds, bauxite, lumber, manganese, numerous creeks and rivers marvelled at the Islanders’ hotels, economic management, political stability, tourism facilities and  their effective methods of marketing their little successfully.

20160512Flag1The “Gold” in my caption recognises the verifiable successes and development the May 26, 1966 sovereignty brought to us. Through very20160512Flag2 disproportionate to the half-century period. I regret that 50 years after 1966 we grown-up Guyanese still await fruition of “our vast potential.”
My Independence Blues regret that for decades we were known as Caricom’s worst election riggers. And I regret that 26 years after May 1966 Desmond Hoyte was not praised more for bowing to the first George Bush, Lech Walesa and  Jimmy Carter to usher in free and fair elections in 1992.
After all, Dessie knew the role played by the same America(ns) to install Burnham and Peter in 1964.

I am pleased that it was the rabidly anticolonial hero Cheddi Jagan who initiated the acceptance of the Golden Arrowhead- that flag which now symbolises our status as an independent state. But I’m so sorry that it was an American- not a Guyanese- who designed it. Then again even Cheddi solidified his communist, socialist, anti-colonial credentials whilst studying in the USA- in Washington, Chicago, Harlem. Funny eh!
As May 26, 2016 looms, many of my generation are recalling events of May 1966. That’s good for I remind you: More than half of Guyana’s current population were not around in May 1966!
The answers to the last edition’s questions are: Sir Richard Luyt was both Governor, then Governor-General and Rahman Gajraj was elevated from Mayor to Lord Mayor- all in May 1966!
Today’s question: Which of Guyana’s Presidents once presided over the case in the Supreme Court which tried persons who attempted to separate Rupununi from Independent Guyana just three years after May 26,1966?

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