Aug 08, 2017  Features / ColumnistsFreddie Kissoon

In the raging debate on sugar, the union, GAWU, has fought back fiercely with those who argued that sugar is dead. The union’s rebutting dictionary is voluminous. These include the following expressions – “we will fight for the workers”; “we have always struggled for the workers”; “we always had the workers’ interest at heart’; and countless other exclamations like those. But there are some words missing in this dictionary.
The union has never explained the moral and political outrage that a union’s head sits in the leadership of the ruling party and is a parliamentarian for that party. By what logic can he tell his president; “your policies are killing my union membership and we will fight you.”
The sugar industry will be diversified in the coming months and years, GAWU will keep fighting mirages of enemies of sugar that it sees everywhere, but will never answer two questions: Is it not true that the PPP Government jeopardized the future of estate workers because of stupid policies? And secondly, how can a workers’ union be loyal to its cause when it is part of a government? GAWU will die with sugar and you will never get the answer to those questions.
It is the same with the entire PPP leadership. Whether it is PPP personnel in GAWU or in the Rice Producers’ Association or any other institution which forms an essential part of the PPP’s anatomy, this country will not get an apology or receive answers to pressing questions during the hegemony of the PPP, October 1992 – April 2015.
And after fifteen years of Jagdeo/Ramotar rule (which is one year short of four American presidential terms), not even the smallest of apologies will ever come out of the mouths of any of those in that leadership. What you get instead is barefaced denials so sickening that its turns one’s stomach.
freddie-kissoon-300x273When asked about Jagdeo giving out radio licences to his relatives, Gail Teixeira used the words, “they are not Jagdeo’s relatives whatsoever.” The word, whatsoever” is important, because it denotes definitiveness and emphasis. When shown the evidence that licences went to Jagdeo’s niece and his nephew-in-law, she rebutted in the most foolish way by saying that when she denied it, it was because the Government had referred to all on the list as being Jagdeo’s relatives. No one from the government’s side of the House ever said that the list of recipients were relatives of Jagdeo.
Teixeira knows full well that the rallying cry since Jagdeo did his nepotistic thing was that Jagdeo gave out radio licences to his associates, PPP colleagues and relatives. This lady couldn’t bring herself to even utter a half sentence of acknowledgement that two of Jagdeo’s relatives were favoured.
These PPP leaders will not concede any mistake, however tiny or repellant. It is just not in their DNA to say, “Yes, we made a mistake.” Jagdeo told a press conference he didn’t know about the decision to use NIS funds as investment in the bridge.
Do you honestly believe this man? If you believe him, then how do you square his statement with what happened to Maurice Arjoon when he was CEO of NBS? Arjoon’s claim was that he had rejected President Jagdeo’s request for NBS to inject a billion dollars in investment in the bridge. The story is that subsequently vendetta visited Arjoon.
In fifteen years, Jagdeo and the PPP cabals ruled Guyana. The evidence of the misuse of power and corruption is so colossal that it calls into question the distinction between higher and lower animals, if a Guyanese who lived here in those fifteen years chooses to deny those realities. Not one leader in the PPP, from now until the 2020 election campaign ends, is going to tell this nation that terrible mistakes were made and regrets are offered. They are not going to do it. These people are in permanent denial mode.
They do not realize how much capital could be gained by saying that you are sorry. But they are irredeemable humans. They are too pompous and egoistic to apologize. The Arjoon case is finished. We know what happened to the poor man. The Broadcast Bill has been passed. We know who got licences. The Pradoville 2 investigation has revealed sordid nepotism. The forensic audits will reveal more about corrupt PPP mandarins.
Human rights cases will highlight the brutalities, bestialities and cruelties of these people as we saw in the Mark Benschop case. But as more dictatorial excesses of the Jagdeo/Ramotar regime come to light, these people will face the nation and lie. As Elton John once sang; “sorry seems to be the hardest word.”