Home Letters Avoiding to call out PNC/APNU/AFC on lies, division
Timothy Jonas of ANUG appeared as a guest on a local talk show, and in expressing his views on the need for constitutional change and inclusive governance – which for some reason is only promulgated when the PNC (now APNU+AFC) finds itself in the Opposition – Jonas hypothesised that the National Procurement and Tender Administration Board should have 3 persons from the Opposition, 3 from the Government, and one neutral as a means of ensuring inclusivity and preventing cries of corruption and discrimination.
This he posited that, once replicated across the board, including in the awarding of contracts in the oil and gas sector, would ensure a role in the governance structure for the Opposition, and their supporters will not be shut out from benefitting from contracts.
This is all nice-sounding, but when looked at from a logical and real-politick perspective, not only is it foolish and impractical, but when Mr Jonas was asked to provide an example of this model at work anywhere in the US, UK, Canada, India, or anywhere else in the world, he was unable to.
Why? First off, what would be the purpose of holding an election if the losing party still gets to shape policies and even disrupt the developmental agenda of the party whose plans and promises won it the election?
And I mention disrupting because, under Mr. Jonas’s model, the losing party can stymie the awarding of contracts for major developmental projects at NPTAB using their 3 nominees.
Another point to note is the contradiction in the positions of Mr. Jonas and his party. On one hand, they are calling for the scrapping of the 3,3+1 Carter/Price Formula at GECOM, which worked as it was intended to for decades, until the PNC/APNU+AFC got into office. On the other hand, they are pushing the very 3, 3+1 formula for NPTAB and the oil and gas sector as the panacea for perceived corruption and discrimination.
But what the behaviour of the David Granger Administration and the PNC/APNU+AFC has shown over time is that we can have the most well-intentioned formula or laws, they will simply do as they please when it suits them. One only has to look at their rejection of 18 names put forward by the then PPP/C Opposition for the Chairmanship of GECOM, or their sudden inability to calculate the majority of 65 after losing the no-confidence vote, to see how impracticable Mr. Jonas is being.
But what I believe Mr. Jonas is doing is avoiding calling out the PNC/APNU+AFC on their politics of outright lies and division. I believe that, in the case of Mr. Jonas, fear is the driving factor. He is afraid of the attacks from the PNC/APNU+AFC US-based lunatic fringe. So, in order to circle around having to call them out, he has resorted to the familiar ‘inclusivity’ mantra, which was in a comatose state between 2015 and 2020. The difficulty came about when he was challenged to explain how this inclusivity would work.
Guyanese are not fools, though.