The Guyana/Venezuela Border Controversy – Who’s Who

On 3rd December 2014, as Guyana and Venezuela were still wrangling over Venezuela’s audacious entry into Guyana’s territorial waters, the towing away of the seismic survey ship the RV Teknik Perdana and the arresting and charging of some of its crew, thousands of miles away, the portrait of Friedrich Fromhold de Martens (1845-1909), whose alleged activities stand at the heart of the modern border controversy between Guyana and Venezuela, appeared on a stamp of the Russian Republic in recognition of his contributions in the field of international law.

Contextualising the education sector

A 2010 McKinsey follow-up study, ‘How the world’s most improved school systems keep getting better’ made the obvious but yet noteworthy point that improvements in the education system are possible from any level of development.

Best school systems in the world

A path breaking study by McKinsey & Company for the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) repeated what has now become received wisdom: ‘The capacity of countries … to compete in the global knowledge economy increasingly depends on whether they can meet a fast-growing demand for high-level skills.

The minister should eschew short term fixes

As the Minister of Public Health Dr. George Norton completes his fact-finding walkabout, sooner or later he will have to put to us some holistic organisational solutions to the problems in the health sector as he envisages them.

Political majoritarianism must be broken

While facilitating a necessary changing of the political guards, in terms of creating the level of national cooperation that is required if Guyana is really to take off, the recent elections have not provided the minimum of what was expected.

New government should avoid the wrong fork in the road

Political relations in countries such as Guyana never cease to surprise. What at first appeared to me only a political ruse by the PPP/C to save face has been transformed into a significant problem which, if a political solution is not quickly found, is likely to undermine the entire programme of the new government as we go forward.

The PPP’s narrative needs major revision

Important elements of the wider strategy that finally brought down the PPP were: internal subversion to discredit the regime; various forms of economic pressure which, contrary to PPP propaganda, at best led to economic stagnation; more electoral manipulation, this time in the form of the imposition of proportional representation which favoured the opposition forces and the resuscitation of the long concluded Guyana/Venezuela border dispute as a backstop in the event that the PPP was still able to prevail.

The forgotten alliance

If the APNU/AFC coalition can seek succour in the failed Jagan/Burnham attempt to form a national movement, it would well be reminded that it also has much in common with the 1950s alliance between Forbes Burnham and Dr.

It is time to fix the road

Even those of us who are not particularly religious have been socialised into putting great store upon the notion of individual responsibility, based essentially upon a belief in “good” and “evil”.

Stealing is not the worst crime in politics

It appears to me that the political parties that were involved in the APNU/AFC coalition formation proceeded as if the PPP is so broken and discarded that its responses would not matter or would be worth very little.