Note is taken that the government is moving to commission four broadcasting stations in four Amerindian communities. While this development is welcome I cannot help but take note that it comes with blatant disregard for and denial of the freedoms of others, specifically the people of Linden/Region 10 who should have had their television station returned consistent with the 2012 Agreement signed with central government. It seems as though the attacks against this community continue under this government.
It was one thing under the PPP/C ‒ marginalisation, class and ethnic discrimination ‒ when we assumed that government was vindictive because Linden was the stronghold of the opposition. Lindeners by their actions have historically demonstrated that they are prepared to hold any government, be it the party it supports or others, accountable for their development. From what is taking place it is evident the political leadership is out to punish some and expect them to grovel and compromise for their rights as others are made to feel that such will be assured just because of who they are.
Linden voted overwhelmingly for this government and gave it the privilege to sit in office. These voters not only stood strong behind the coalition but their votes made a difference. This government is demonstrating a level of pettiness and vindictiveness that is a hangover from the struggle the community had with the major political party in the coalition configuration and it must stop.
Moses Nagamootoo who expressed concerns along his political journey as a journalist and advocate for freedom of the press, as minister responsible for broadcasting, is now turning a blind eye to state of press freedom in Linden, and is in the forefront of carrying out the wicked and vindictive policy of deprivation. His hero Cheddi Jagan would be turning in his grave. There is no reason to continue the PPP hatred for Linden and Lindeners.
The bauxite workers who were denied justice under the PPP continue to have justice denied under the coalition government they voted overwhelmingly for. This writer along with the Guyana Trades Union Congress have also found themselves incurring this government’s wrath for daring to publicly advocate for the working class, good governance, respect for their rights and the rule of law.
This government’s actions are a demonstration telling this nation, communities and people what will happen to them if they oppose: you will forever be denied the investment of your tax dollars and your rights and freedoms; you will be made to suffer in the efforts to bring you to your knees, economically, politically and otherwise. Africans, civil-rights minded individuals and organisations as well as the independent media fraternity must speak out and help to bring an end to this injustice to the Linden community or any community that faces a similar fate.
Society needs divergent views and pressure groups that will press government for advancement and development. People must be able to freely express their views and desires assured that they will not be victimized because of them. This is the development Guyana needs and what is happening now is not progressiveness. History has taught all peoples that nothing substantial to improve their living conditions and advance their rights will come without struggle, and in some instances loss of life.
I have rage about this blatant discrimination against Linden/ Region 10 and efforts to break the back of resistance when only through such resistance has society achieved anything. In this Emancipation Month Africans must once again find their resolve and take pride in remembering and upholding the legacy of the struggles of their ancestors for freedom, rights and equality, and safeguard the progress gained.
The people of Guyana who fought against systems of slavery and indentureship must not be cowed into fighting other systems, groups and individuals who seek to suppress further freedoms. Shame on David Granger, shame on the APNU+AFC government, shame on Moses Nagamootoo, shame on those who remain silent in society in the presence of the continuation of injustice committed against the people of Guyana. Shame.