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Monday, May 29, 2006

by Peter R. Ramsaroop, MBA,

(Kaieteur News, 21 May 2006)

At the beginning of the year, I wrote a column for this paper entitled “2006, The Year of the People’s Revolution” and one last September entitled “Taking Back Our Country.” Both of these columns described the pulse of our nation at that time. However, the pressure over the last few months has increased the rate of our pulse and now we are more ready to stand firm for justice and equality. As Lincoln Lewis, General Secretary of the Trade Union Congress said, “there will be no peace until we have justice.” We all agree!

We have reached the time where the most critical decision our nation has ever faced was supposed to have already been decided. Instead, we have seen the incompetence of GECOM and the dictatorship of the PPP/C in Parliament stifling democracy for which they supposedly fought. One must wonder if it was not all a sham back in 1992 when there was a call for fair and free elections and a clean voter list. Now we are once again faced with the same issue and the very party that fought for it, is now fighting against it. Just like other dictatorships around the world, once in power, the PPP/C now do not want to allow the nation have a fair chance of putting them out of office.

It is time we take our bodies and voices to the places where they can be heard. The Government is turning their back on the options for peace by failing to pursue a clean voter list through verification and by their dictatorial approach in Parliament.

We know regardless of race politics, Guyanese want a free and prosperous society. However, we see indications of this creeping dictatorship all over our land. Hundreds of millions of dollars are being spent on contracts with little or no results and the President continues to put up a front with the private sector in an attempt to buy votes.

I truly hope we do not allow these same politicians to govern us for the next five years.

We the people must now step out; whether by peaceful protests or by the bellows of our voices, we need to let ourselves be heard. History has proven that unless the people want change, it will never happen. If we are satisfied with the current collective quality of life and enjoy things just the way they are, then nothing needs to change. However, if we are unsatisfied with our current state after allowing the PPP ample time to improve the nation, then it is time for us to make our stand.

We have three choices, we can do nothing; we can attempt to do the same thing with more intensity; or we can do things differently. If we do nothing, then we can expect nothing. If we continue to do the same thing, then we can expect the same results. Our clear choice is to seek out a different strategy that will rely on qualified leaders who have the gumption to push our nation into the next phase of progress.

The term “revolution” may send a chill up the backs of some politicians, but we the people want a better Guyana and we are simply tired of the proroguing excuses. We are tired of being used by the government. We are ready to stand up for what is right for our country.

We are also ready to demand a high standard of decency from our leaders. For those who remember the police going into Buxton and arresting 130 males, do you also remember what NCN broadcasted on television? They did not show a single arrest, but angry women wanting their kinfolk back. I wonder what message they were trying to send. Even more recently on the GINA FACT, they were seemingly inciting racial tensions by making statements against the opposition without any supporting evidence.

The people force is necessary now because we cannot allow the continued monopoly of radio and state media and we cannot allow our tax dollars to be wasted by corrupt politicians. In short, we simply cannot continue to have an incompetent government. They have forgotten what it is like to live without food and the necessities of life. They have forgotten how difficult it is to grow a business in a country that has little money to spend. They have forgotten the people who put them in office. They have forgotten Guyana.

Let’s stand up for our rights as a people; it is our democratic privilege and our responsibility as citizens. This country, with its institutions, belongs to the people who inhabit it. Whenever we grow weary of the existing government, it is our Constitutional right to replace it.

Though we grow weary of our government, we cannot become wearisome in our faith that Guyana does indeed have a future. If we lose heart and falter, then surely our dejected nation will once again plummet into the troughs of tyranny. We cannot lose our will to fight for a better tomorrow. For if we do, we will have sentenced our children to a lifetime of misery and sorrow.

We must protect our republic from every ruse that would subjugate us to one person or one party. We should not give the government a reason to order army troops into our streets, and even more so - Venezuelan Army Troops. Let’s first show we can change our nation by a people’s revolution now, a people force all over our nation then by our votes, when all of the processes are in place for a fair, free and transparent elections. Our hearts are strong and our cause is noble; we can take Guyana back and set it on a course for which we all will be proud.

As I have said many times in various forums, “Down with the lords! Down with corruption! Let the people unite with hope as their beacon. Let us march as One People - to the beat of unity, a One Guyana - peacefully into the streets and proclaim a new era of progress and prosperity for Guyana. Long live Democracy! Long live the People in happiness and peace”

It is time for the removal of the stagnate and impotent government of our failed past. We will no long allow any Guyanese to feel marginalised or inferior. We are all brothers and sisters of Guyana regardless of race or religion.

With the mighty thunder of our voices, the resolve of our determination, the strength of our will as Guyanese, and the fervour of our young generation, we will take back our country and we will overcome. We must and we will. Guyana, our precious Guyana, awaits our triumph.

Kaieteur News