stabroek news letter

Dear Editor,

Vishnu Bisram’s letter which was published in Stabroek News on Saturday, June 19, under the caption, ‘WPA does not hold itself accountable in its statement’ provides evidence that Mr Bisram, in spite of his recent attempts to distance himself from the former ruling party and government, the PPP/C, has in fact, not changed his colours. Throughout the 23years of the PPP/C’s rule he has been an unapologetic defender of that regime. During that period he spent a lot of his time attacking and criticizing those who exposed the wrongdoings of the PPP/C government.

Mr Bisram’s criticism of the WPA’s June 13 statement has confirmed that he has returned to his old job as a defender of the PPP/C. It is clear that he is still haemorrhaging from that party’s election defeat and loss of power. This is understandable given his political history as a PPP/C activist.

Mr Bisram is not an ordinary citizen expressing an opinion on the political landscape in Guyana, but is in fact a propaganda agent of the PPP/C who is dutifully belching out, verbatim, that party’s propaganda line as it relates to matters of the PCD and post 1992 elections negotiations.  Let me just cite one example from his letter: he accuses the WPA and Dr Clive Thomas of refusing the offer of a ministerial position from the late President Cheddi Jagan.  Contrary to Mr Bisram’s utterances, it was Dr Jagan who had unceremoniously withdrawn the offer. The WPA delegation was told by Dr Roger Luncheon, the then of the Head of the Presidential Secretariat, that the President had had a change of mind and the “offer is off the table”. That was the end of the matter. Dr Luncheon is still alive and well enough to say if I have misrepresented the position on this issue.

In attempting to justify his point that the “WPA does not hold itself accountable for some of the problems facing the nation” Bisram argues “that it takes a hands-off approach as though it were not part of the government, when in fact it is part and parcel of the government”.  Mr Bisram’s logic, which I refuse to accept, is without foundation. The problems facing the nation cannot be laid at the door of the WPA and the APNU+AFC government; these are problems inherited from the previous regime.

It is clear that Mr Bisram’s mind is poisoned by his hate of the WPA for its role in contributing to the defeat of the PPP/C regime. For him and others like him it was good for the WPA and Rodney to struggle against the PNC government, but not against the PPP.  For the benefit of Mr Bisram and the wider public it should be known that the WPA, since it became part of the APNU+AFC government, has accepted the principle of “collective responsibility” for government policy. Nowhere in the statement Bisram alludes to is there any evidence of the WPA’s alleged departure from this principle.

An objective reading of the WPA’s statement will not miss the fact that the party had engaged in “criticism and self-criticism”. Mr Bisram is an intellectual and is therefore capable of understanding every aspect of the WPA statement. He however prefers to deliberately ignore the message conveyed therein. Presumably, he wants the WPA to assume the posture of the PPP/C and indulge in cussing down the incumbent government for everything under the sun.

Editor, it is unfortunate that in today’s Guyana, civilized expressions of political differences have now become something not befitting Guyanese polemics.


Yours faithfully,

Tacuma Ogunseye