I offer below my refutation of the fictionalization of parts of my political life that was carried in a letter of Wednesday April 11, 2018 by Tacuma Ogunseye. Mr Ogunseye’s traditional nastiness in politics is well documented in this country. My notes here add to that compilation.
1. It was under the editorship of Anthony Calder of Kaieteur News I did a series of investigative accounts of what was taking place in Buxton. In the middle of the Buxton violence, Mr Calder went to edit the Chronicle. He invited me to do a similar series for which I was paid. Mr Ogunseye said the Chronicle series was facilitated by Moses Nagamootoo. Nowhere was Moses Nagamootoo in the picture. The crime syndrome began on Mash Day 2002 and by that time Nagamootoo had long resigned as a Cabinet minister and had gone on to do law in Barbados. By 2002 when my investigation journalism began, Mr Nagamootoo was nowhere around. I hope Mr Nagamootoo does the decent thing and exposes Mr Ogunseye’s fiction.
2. Mr Ogunseye mentions my investigations into the violence at Buxton but conveniently omitted his involvement. It was a sickening manifestation when day after day, the gunmen killed people using ethnic criteria and Mr Ogunseye supported them. When a strong source gave me incontrovertible evidence of what Ogunseye was doing in Buxton, he tried to shut me up with a libel suit. He asked Mortimer Codette to do the paperwork. Little did he know I had a very good friendship with Codette.
Codette called me in to explain his difficulty and asked me to make up with Ogunseye because he did not want to be the lawyer involved. I refused showing Morty the evidence I had on Ogunseye but to my disappointment Morty told me he understands and sympathizes with Ogunseye’s role. I then told Morty he should go ahead with the libel and I would tear up Ogunseye in court with what I knew. Morty refused to go ahead with the libel. Morty filed the writ to please Mr Ogunseye and promised me that he would let the writ die a natural death.
He kept his promise to me. After the case had been called four times (on each occasion Mr Ogunseye turned up but not Morty), on the fifth occasion the case was dismissed with a $45,000 cost to me. In an address to the court I said I would never take a cent from someone like Ogunseye but I would ask that he donate the money to the family of one of the victims. This was an old man that Dr Janette Bulkan knew well whom the gunmen killed for fun when they saw him walking in Better Hope after they had robbed a business place in that village. I never knew if Mr Ogunseye paid that money.
3. Here are the words of that Guyanese giant, Eusi Kwayana, on my journalistic investigation of the Buxton violence. They are contained in Kwayana’s book, The Morning After, “I have found the essence of his [Kissoon’s] findings on the East coast disturbances with few exceptions well founded and based on information too detailed in particulars to be discounted. His knowledge of the personalities in and around the Taliban exceeds mine.” Here is Kwayana on Ogunseye: “Tacuma Ogunseye whom I have called Brother Tacuma for some thirty years, has described the story of Buxton as a liberation struggle. At no time in our long association have I disagreed more with him…I have attacked what he now supports or justifies.”
4. Ogunseye writes all the time but never replies to diaspora economist, Sasenarine Singh, who once more accused him as recently as March 21 this year. On the first day of 2017, Mr Singh, in the Kaieteur News, published incriminating material about Mr Ogunseye’s financial dealing with the PPP government. In that same letter, Mr Singh quoted what Mr Ogunseye had to say about the unfitness of Clive Thomas to run SARA because of age. I would like to remind readers that of all the criticisms made against me, I have never been accused of taking a cent from any political party. I have brought out what I knew about this financial transaction which was effected through one of the top female leaders of the PPP. In an email exchange with diaspora WPA activist, Keith Branch, I warned Keith that Ogunseye is not as innocent as he appears.