The glorious and momentous Chairmanship of the G77 is Guyana’s. David Granger can rejoice in the prestige gained as he is wont, but the Chair came at a hefty price and also with high recurring costs.
First the price: Guyana’s Ambassador to the UN, Michael Ten Pow has not voted at UNCLOS – law of the sea. This is specifically in Guyana’s interest against Venezuela. Ten-Pow instructed his officer Megayla Austin not to vote. Guyana was marked as absent. Here is Guyana taking Venezuela to court for not adhering to the UNCLOS convention and Guyana’s Mission at the UN saw it fit to abstain from the vote. This is a dereliction of duty to Guyana and a complete betrayal of our national interest. I can only hope this ‘mess of pottage’ chokes the avaricious few.
And then the recurring costs: It is interesting to see the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ press release on the issue speak about “Team members will be drawn from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, other Government Ministries and agencies and from the Guyanese diaspora”. The ‘team’ will cost the taxpayers over $500 million per annum and includes such notables as former UG Vice Chancellor Ivelaw Griffith, Troy Torrington, and Neil Pierre. Other names being floated include Attorney-at-Law James Bond and former Mayor of Linden Carwyn Holland. It is as if the last joke is being played on the Guyanese taxpayer before we can get to the polls on March 2, 2020.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs Director General, Audrey Jardine-Wadell was the first casualty of this ‘vanity’ campaign, Guyana was the last; the implications for our border security and maritime issues are far-reaching. Can Ten Pow and his team of cronies be trusted to serve Guyana in the future? I think not! This betrayal of our nation shall surely live on in infamy and I wish all those involved suffer the fate described best in Sir Walter Scott’s Patriotism Innominatus:
“Despite those titles, power, and pelf,
The wretch, concentred all in self,
Living, shall forfeit fair renown,
And, doubly dying, shall go down
To the vile dust from whence he sprung,
Unwept, unhonour’d, and unsung”