One of the best things that could have happen for me is for the United Nations Secretary General, Antonio Guterres to comment on the Guyana March 2, 2020 General and Regional Elections. Firstly, let me state that I have the utmost respect for the United Nations and the Secretary General, as well as the Office. I have great respect for the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), the Organisation of American States (OAS) and the international community.
I have always been a law abiding citizen of Guyana – I pay my taxes, I am honest, have never been corrupt neither would I ever become corrupt, I conform to the National Pledge of Guyana, so I would say that I am a good citizen. In 2015, I voted for the APNU+AFC government as a part of the movement for change in administration. Prior to 2015, I had criticized the PPP/C government when I thought that it fell short of the expectations of the people.
After 2015, I challenged the APNU+AFC government viciously and openly throughout the past five years because I felt that what was wrong for the PPP/C, I could not accept as right from the APNU+AFC government; essentially, life operates on principles. I did not plan to vote on March 2 for either the PPP/C or the APNU+AFC because I felt that both leaderships operated from their lower-self and the people of Guyana deserved a better quality of leadership.
After the March 2, 2020 incidents surrounding the tabulation of the Region Four votes, I would have led a ‘campaign’, if it had become necessary, against the APNU+AFC government for them to demit office in the interest of protecting the rule of law and democracy in Guyana. However, after all of the discrepancies were unearthed from the national recount process, I realized that while the APNU+AFC was being accused of questionable acts during the tabulation process for Region Four, the PPP/C members were not in church singing in the choir or attending bible study on March 2, or prior. Both parties are guilty, in my view, of significant malpractices.
As a child growing up, my parents taught me that honesty is the best policy, therefore, I find it extremely baffling, the stance which the international community has taken to accuse one party of wrong and not the other. Just in case Mr. Secretary General, you were not provided with this information before making your statement, I would like to humbly and respectfully, state that both of our political parties, in my view, have wronged the Guyanese people in these elections.
There is a wide view that the international community seems to be leaning towards a change in regime in Guyana, hence the seeming blindness to the wrongs committed on both sides. While I understand the arguments on the rule of law, democracy and that decisions of the Courts ought to be adhered to, a fundamental point that I think the international community is missing or do not care to pay attention to, is that the current regime, represents a constituency as well as the Opposition represents a constituency; and ethno-politics has been perhaps the main governance challenge in Guyana from as early as 1953.
What in my view, is best for Guyana at this stage, is not declaration but rather a solution? A declaration would not be the solution.
Some of us have been working behind the scenes to try to get our political leaders, to explore and consider a solution, where both of the major parties could form a government for an interim period, with a specific mandate to conduct; constitutional reform, electoral reform (to facilitate a new electoral culture in the country) and to have consensus on an economic development policy and strategy with relevance for the 30 – 40 years.
I must also state that what I find extremely baffling, is the reluctance from the international community to assist the Guyanese people to find a solution to our almost 70 years old ethno-political problem. The United Nations, the OAS, CARICOM, and individual countries have a huge wealth of knowledge and expertise at their disposal, yet they are seemingly hesitant to help us. Democracy is certainly not perfect, as a matter of fact, I see the lack of interest in a preventative approach to the escalation our current situation, as being a fundamental flaw in democracy.
As I read the public statements from the Mandela’s ‘Elders Group’, the former President of Liberia, and others significant regional and international personalities and organisations, I can’t help but wonder, how much do they understand and care about what is really happening in Guyana.
My humble request to the United Nations Secretary General, as a citizen who has literally worked in the gutters fighting for a better country and has challenged
governments on both sides, to my own peril at times, can you help us, to find a solution to our country’s 67 years old ethno-political problem, so that we can hand our next generation, a better Guyana than the one that was handed to us…please, please, please Mr. SG?
Editor-in-Chief’s note: The report of the CARICOM observer team at the recount has demolished claims of major discrepancies. These claims were in the main fantasies concocted by APNU+AFC agents to try to prevent the declaration of a result. What is truly baffling is that Ms Thomas fails to recognise that the unanimity in the international community reflects their desire to ensure that free and fair elections and democracy are upheld. The solution being sought from the Secretary General would have found fertile ground from May, 2015 onwards. Unfortunately this opportunity was not taken.