Nagamootoo’s veneer is exposed

Dear Editor,

Moses Nagamootoo’s column published by the state-owned, Guyana Chronicle, aptly named ‘My Turn’ continues to reflect his narcissistic tendencies. ‘New Politics – Ideas Before Insults’, is replete with levels of hypocrisy that only Nagamootoo can achieve. His column attacks the PPP “propaganda wolf pack” and only as an afterthought remembers to add in the conclusion, “It may be unrealistic of me to hope that Guyana evolves a culture of new politics, or could be visited by a fresh wind of positive political engagement. The old, toxic ‘cuss-down, busedown’ politics is neither healthy nor amusing. We need to debate ideas, not trade insults”.

This statement could be laughable, if it was not so pathetic. Moses, and, the AFC he headed supposedly joined the APNU coalition because it was ‘change’ and would bring a new political culture, or so they said.  What is the reality today? His government has rejected any semblance of national unity and every suggestion, criticism (no matter how constructive) and even advice from its own advisors, including rejecting eighteen “fit and proper” citizens for the post of Chairman of the Gecom in violation of the constitution! He sits idly by whilst paramountcy of the PNC is creeping into every level of the state apparatus.

Moses Nagamootoo opportunistically uses comments made by Joey Jagan and the responses from Guyanese, including at least one PPP leader, to somehow try to position himself as the ‘genius’ (a term he gave himself in a November 4, 2011 Stabroek News article) advocating debates on national issues. In reality, he has been an abysmal failure and is a mere pawn of the Granger-led government. Mr Nagamootoo’s veneer is exposed; he is a mere opportunist, who is scrounging around to make himself relevant. Mr Nagamootoo cannot even set the date for the next sitting of the National Assembly as the Leader of the House without the green light from the General Secretary of the Peoples’ National Congress.

Mr Nagamootoo jumps on the bandwagon to write about corruption. Editor, Moses Nagamootoo has some audacity to talk about corruption under the former PPP/C administration – corruption that his government, even after spending almost $150 million on forensic audits, has still been unable to prove. It is his government that has gained notoriety for the consistent and constant violation of the constitution and the procurement laws, and now international notoriety for the deceit surrounding the ExxonMobil agreement, including the fact that the Guyanese people were misled for over year about the US$18 million signing bonus.  Is this the issue of corruption which brought Joey Jagan to the coalition and more especially to David Granger in 2015 as claimed by Mr Nagamootoo?

Isn’t it the same Nagamootoo who voted against the PPP/C motion in January 2016 calling for all parliamentarians to make their tax returns and Integrity Commission declarations for the last 10 years public? Isn’t it the same Nagamootoo who sat idly by for 30 months with no Integrity Commission in place? Isn’t it the same Nagamootoo who sat by and watched as the Integrity Commission Secretariat was disbanded? Isn’t it the same Nagamootoo who enjoys the massive increases in salaries, allowances and benefits, implemented a mere six weeks after taking office? Isn’t it the same Nagamootoo who has increased his discretionary funds from the modest $3 million allocated to Prime Minister Sam Hinds in 2014 to over $100 million in the 2018 National Budget?

How can Mr Nagamootoo be taken seriously when he says, “On occasions, he [Joey Jagan] had criticised me in language that was by no means flattering, but I never held that against him.”   A Stabroek News article on November 4, 2011, reports on Nagamootoo responding to Joey Jagan’s accusation that he is a “soup drinker” and attacks Joey for destroying his father’s [Dr Cheddi Jagan] legacy, among other things.

He goes on to say, “It would have been so much better if Joey was engaged on his ideas on a possible future government of national unity, in which the PPP could play a role, instead of being sledge-hammered and heaped with cheap insults”. He forgets conveniently that the PPP took back Nagamootoo in 2006 after he left in 2003 and the PPP asked Joey Jagan to be on its candidate list in the 2011 elections (which he accepted) after he had walked away from the PPP/C when he was an MP? In both cases, the PPP had been magnanimous in accepting back its ‘prodigal sons’, but alas, it was to no avail.

Mr Nagamootoo continues to be an irrelevant rubber stamp, useful only for his “toxic cuss down” politics in the National Assembly against the PPPC and Leader of the Opposition Bharrat Jagdeo. His services like those of Peter D’Aguiar will be dispensed with by the PNC!

Yours faithfully,

Gail Teixeira

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