Cocaine airways

It was just another Sunday in the South American cocaine belt when the Guyana Defence Force discovered another illegal airstrip by chance.

A dialogue on corruption

At a recent press freedom seminar in Jamaica, that country’s Finance Minister, Mr Audley Shaw sketched a startling picture of how serious the corruption problem in the country was.


The workings of the University of Guyana are shrouded in mystery as far as outsiders are concerned, and even the periodic flashes of publicity do little to illuminate how the institution is administered.


Taken at face value, the Guyana Power and Light (GPL) Incorporated’s Energy Conservation Cam-paign launched last week is an admirable step in the right direction.

Smart Power

Richard L Armitage was US Deputy Secretary of State from 2001 to 2005 under President George W Bush.

Iowa’s dark horses

With the Iowa caucus barely a fortnight away, the current front-runners in this year’s US presidential campaigns make an unlikely pair.

Grand evasions

President Bharrat Jagdeo set the intellectual tone for the administration’s present posture on piracy in the East Berbice-Corentyne Region.

Blind faith

Mr Abdul Kadir’s arrest earlier this year heightened widespread dread of terror attacks against targets in the western world by Islamic extremists.


Early on in his `92 administration President Cheddi Jagan expressed exasperation at the situation at the then Guyana Electricity Corporation (GEC).

Sunday Editorial

The world was somewhat surprised – and perhaps even the Venezuelan opposition was too – when President Hugo Ch

Bad press, good press

At an interaction with the media on Monday last, President Bharrat Jagdeo hedged when asked whether the reports that he was planning a Cabinet reshuffle were true.

A fish rots from its head

A centuries-old Italian proverb says that “When a fish rots, it starts from its head.” As the Guyana Police Force prepares to embark on the DfID-funded Security Sector Reform Action Plan which was recently approved by the National Assembly, it is a good thing that attention is being paid to training young officers who will eventually occupy positions at the head of the force.

Conduct unbecoming

One of the most widely known articles of the United States’ Army Uniform Code of Military Justice states that “Any commissioned officer, cadet, or midshipman who is convicted of conduct unbecoming an officer and a gentleman shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.” The international public has become familiar with the expression ‘conduct unbecoming’ through books and films which have often focussed on the foibles and failings of military officers.

Fallen through the cracks

A 16-year-old, an 18-year-old and a 20-year-old are dead. Having graduated, reports say, from being lookouts for bandits, they took up arms and went on the attack in Non Pariel.

The Lall incident

Minister of Local Government, Mr Kellawan Lall has declined several invitations from this newspaper to speak about what he is alleged to have done three Sundays ago at a rum shop at Vryheid’s Lust on the East Coast.

Seasonal woes

The year 2007 is not ending very well for President Jagdeo. If it wasn’t enough that the Venezuelans invaded the Cuyuni, the government found itself begging for a shipment of fuel from the perpetrators of the aggression.

Corentyne outreach

In the aftermath of a series of serious security incidents, the cabinet conducted a weekend ‘outreach’ campaign on 16-17 November on the Corentyne coast.

The transatlantic Muslim divide

Compared with the tension that exists in Muslim communities across Europe, America’s Muslims are a more contented lot.

A moral question?

The novelist Martin Amis recently asked a British audience to raise their hands if they felt ‘morally superior to the Taliban’.

Common enemies of all mankind

If the allegations that Patrick Sumner, Victor Jones and David Leander were tortured can be proven, some members of the Guyana Police Force and the Guyana Defence Force are likely to be in big trouble.

Learning from St Lucia

This newspaper carried a report last week about a mother in St Lucia, who was jailed for one year for failing to do anything when she was told that her daughter was being sexually abused by her grandfather.

A victory in the drug fight

The convictions secured against two of the accused in the cocaine in fish glue case constitute a small but important victory in the struggle against the drug trade.

Double standards?

In our Wednesday edition we reported that last Sunday, a minister of government entered a bar in Montrose, East Coast Demerara, at about 1 am.


On Thursday most Guyanese in America – or Guyanese Americans, as they should probably be more correctly called – whether ignorant of or ignoring the minor fuss in our letters column about cultural erosion or cross-fertilization and copycat behaviour, would have tucked into their Thanksgiving turkey, with or without cranberry sauce, but certainly with great relish.

The wheels come off

Nothing quite characterises the contradictions in the current ‘Operation Safeway’ as the success in arresting hundreds of petty offenders on the one hand, and the comparative failure to arrest the spiralling toll of road fatalities, on the other.

Preparing for the Bali conference on climate change

The 13th Conference of the Parties, COP, to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, UNFCC, and the 3rd Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol, will be hosted by Indonesia on the island of Bali from December 3 to 14, 2007.

A sad story

There is a sad sameness to several recent rape-murders. In two of the most savage, the victims were innocent schoolgirls in small rural villages.

Ishmael Beah

When UNICEF celebrates the 18th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child today, it will appoint Ishmael Beah as an Ambassador.

The AK-47s

Now that new leadership is in place in the Guyana Defence Force the environment has been created for a fresh approach in the way the army interfaces with the public on matters of national interest.

Venezuelan incursions

On Thursday, Venezuela made incursions into Guyana’s territory – again. On this occasion two dredges were destroyed in the Wenamu/Cuyuni, and helicopters intruded into our air-space.

The General in his labyrinth

Pakistan’s dramatic shift towards democracy may unseat President Pervez Musharraf, but he need not worry about the judgement of history – his manipulation of America’s hectoring post 9/11 foreign policy is a lesson for the ages.

The King and Mr Chavez

Last week’s 17th Ibero-American Summit in Santiago, Chile, attended by the Heads of State and Government of twenty-two countries from Latin America and the Iberian Peninsula, was supposed to have been all about social cohesion.

Building a safe nanotechnology future

We are living – according to some – on the brink of a nanotechnology revolution, where matter is engineered at a scale thousands of times smaller than the eye can see, and familiar materials behave in unexpected ways.

The Persaud disclosures

After months of official denial and failing memories, the Guyana Police Force unwittingly cast fresh light on the darkest period of criminal violence in this country’s post-independence history.

Free-fire zone

Most citizens of this country want to live in safety and they rely on the state and its law enforcement agencies to protect their lives and property.

So, what is the extent of money laundering?

In his address to the annual awards ceremony of the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA), two Saturdays ago President Jagdeo challenged the widely held belief that a significant part of the economy is being buttressed by laundered money.

‘Thunder King’

Never mind peace and goodwill, this is the season of noise nuisance and danger.

Closing the gender gap

Nordic countries may not have the best (warmest) weather in the world, but this week, once again, they were recognized as leaders in eliminating gender discrimination.

The death of innocents

We are accustomed almost every day now to reading about or seeing on television news of murder and mayhem somewhere in the world.

Top secret plan

What on earth did Minister of Home Affairs Mr Clement Rohee have in mind when he decided to present only an edited summary of the proposed Security Sector Reform Action Plan for the National Assembly’s approval last week?

Crude Promises

With crude oil prices likely to rise above US$100 per barrel by the end of this year, there has never been a better time for petroleum-rich countries to buy their way out of chronic debt and underdevelopment.

Elections ID card

Thus far, the government has offered two reasons why the call by GECOM and opposition parties for a new ID card for upcoming elections would not be acceded to.

Municipal drama

The latest municipal drama is a piece of theatre with which Georgetown residents are only too familiar.

Better late

It is welcome news that the Ministry of Health recognizes the disease that is alcoholism as a national public health issue and is planning strategies to address it.


Across Latin America and the Caribbean, there are a couple of leaders, like Cuba’s Fidel and Brazil’s Lula, who are instantly recognizable by their first name alone.

The wrong and the restless

The simmering civil unrest that now seems to be part of the prevalent pattern of public protest against perceived mismanagement of public safety and public utilities erupted into an ugly showdown in Ruimveldt in mid-October.

Water torture

A pattern of low-intensity, non-violent, issue-centred, community-based but boisterous protests has sprung up in certain coastal villages.

Bajan invasion!

The past few months have witnessed a flurry of diplomatic and business activity between Guyana and Barbados as the two CARICOM member states appear to be positioning themselves for closer bilateral relations in the field of investment and commerce.

Forest offer

Earlier this month at the formal opening of the Commonwealth Finance Ministers Meeting at the National Cultural Centre, President Jagdeo must have seriously surprised some of those in his audience as he wrapped up his presentation.

‘Strangers in our own country’

Developing a sense of nationhood means developing a historical consciousness. Perceptions of the past inevitably change from one era to the next, but that does not mean that each generation should not attempt to come to its own understanding of the events and movements of earlier periods, or indiscriminately sweep away the cultural remains left behind by predecessors.