The Ministry of the Presidency in a statement on Monday morning said the government had no intention of “scrapping” or “scuttling” the issuance of commemorative stamps and it criticised reports in the Stabroek News and the Guyana Times which had carried reports to this effect.
Based on an agreement between the Guyana Post Office Corporation (GPOC) and the Cheddi Jagan Research Centre Inc (CJRCI), stamps and first day covers commemorating the centennial birth anniversary of the late President Cheddi Jagan were to be issued on Thursday. They were not issued because of the intervention of the government in the matter. That intervention would constitute a scuttling of the original process.
While it says that the issuing of commemorative stamps for former Presidents will be done, the Ministry of the Presidency statement provided no information on if the stamps contracted by the CJRCI would still be issued and if not what would become of the financial arrangements which had been entered into.
Critics have said that the government’s belated promise to commemorate the centennial birth anniversaries of both Dr Jagan and the late President Arthur Chung appeared contrived and as an afterthought since both dates have passed. Chung’s 100th birth anniversary was in January.
Critics have also said that there appeared to be an attempt to link the records of the two former Presidents when that was not possible. Jagan was the head of four separate administrations over decades while Chung was a ceremonial President for 10 years.
Stabroek News Editor-in-Chief Anand Persaud said that the newspaper stood by its report of March 24th headlined `Planned Cheddi Jagan centennial stamps scrapped’.