Sep 04, 2017
Executive Member of the Working People’s Alliance (WPA), Dr. David Hinds, is accusing the leadership of the coalition of stifling internal opinions.
The political commentator believes that the leadership has done this through limiting decision-making to the few Cabinet members and the Presidency.
In his recent writings, Dr. Hinds commented that in the process of doing this, the leadership of the coalition has shut off participation by crucial coalition parties in decision-making.
He said that the parties of the coalition have been essentially immobilized and muzzled by this approach. The outcome of this approach, Dr. Hinds said, has been bad for the coalition. In this regard, the University Lecturer said that the Alliance For Change (AFC) has lost its support base simply because it is perceived as an uncritical participant in bad policy-making. Dr. Hinds commented that the WPA faces an internal civil-war, because some of its members believe that it has allowed itself to be silenced and manipulated by the dominant partners in the government.
The political activist said that the PNC’s non-governmental leadership is demoralized, as they are not part of policy-making.
“These developments have ignited unnecessary tension within the coalition– between the AFC and the APNU and between the WPA and the government, which has in turn negatively affected the image of the government and its ability to inspire confidence among its own supporters. This approach must change—for its own good, the coalition must begin to operate like a partnership rather than a unitary entity. Empowering the coalition parties in meaningful ways would in the long run be beneficial to the government and the country.”
Dr. Hinds asserted that in some regards, the government seems to be angrier with and willing to confront critique by its supporters than to confront the barrage by the People’s Progressive Party (PPP). In this regard, he pointed out that Government’s anger at Kaieteur News columnist, Trade Unionist Lincoln Lewis and even himself, is much more than it is at the PPP. He noted that some persons have even expressed the opinion that the critique of those individuals only serves the interest of the PPP.
“We are known supporters of the government who have made it very clear that we do not want to see the PPP back in power. But some in our government have not learned how to deal with internal creative dissent; they seem to prefer blind loyalty. Some government leaders do not understand the value of creative self-critique and how it puts you on a higher plane than your competitors who are grounded in an ideology of domination. They do not see how Freddie’s critique is more destructive to the PPP than to the coalition or how Lincoln’s cries for the rule of law keeps them from walking the dirty road of the PPP.”
Dr. Hinds stressed that the success of the coalition would depend on the ability of its three major parties to put an end to their immobilization.
The political commentator said it is high time that the PNC, as a party, uses its enormous influence to force the government to stop marginalizing its source—the coalition parties.
He said, too, that the AFC should wake up and recover its reason for being and temper its seeming love affair with the trappings of power. As for the WPA, he said that it must continue its public critiques of government’s ill-advised policies and its campaign for intra-coalition democracy, until there is change in those areas.
Dr. Hinds said that failure to act will see Jagdeo and the PPP gaining more traction, while the coalition’s base becomes more demoralized. The University Lecturer warned when demoralization becomes normative, even oil money would not change the state of play.