Home Letters Only APNU mathematicians would find this action sensible
Winston Jordan’s signature as ‘Minister of Finance’ has been worthless on any non-routine document since December 21, 2018. Jordan’s latest (public) flourish of the pen has been to sign an MoU with Bank of Guyana (BoG) Governor, Gobind Ganga, for the management of an account (yet to be approved) in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. This three-card trick needs explaining for the uninitiated.
Winston Jordan said the Fed Reserve “it is the safest places to keep the money” as if the BoG has had a robbery in its history. BoG foreign currency reserves are always held in Fed reserve accounts, this is nothing new. The BoG has never been robbed in the traditional sense; however, Jordan has orchestrated the biggest squandermania of money and resources in Guyana’s history. The populace has been taxed to breaking point with over $300 billion collected by GRA per annum since 2015; Guyana’s USD reserves were 968 million in 2015. All the collected revenue has been spent; the reserves have been depleted to the point where they can only cover the massive overdraft of $73.1 billion as of November 2019. Brigadier Granger and his Lieutenant Jordan have bankrupted Guyana. Guyana has nothing to show for this massive depletion of revenue. No hydroelectric plant, no bridge over rivers, no new hotels. All of the reserves now expended were kept in accounts at the same Federal Reserve Bank of New York, that money was not safe, what makes this money any different?
The Granger Administration highlighting of the Natural Resource Fund is nothing short of a gimmicky distraction from the present disastrous state of the economy. Granger said he “inherited a bad hand”, I would suggest that the work required to get back to where Guyana has US$1 billion in reserves is going to take longer than expected, for with oil revenues come great expectations from the populace. All the infrastructure projects that were abandoned or sabotaged by APNU/AFC will have to be fast-tracked for the benefit of the people. After four and a half years, David Patterson now recognises that there is a shortfall in power generation; his plan? Add 47 MW via new generating sets; why not a barge?
The unsavoury truth is that a sovereign wealth fund is nothing short of idiotic at this point; we would be investing our oil revenues in America and earning 1 per cent while borrowing far larger sums at 4 per cent. Only APNU mathematicians would find this course of action sensible. A fund will become relevant after we have returned our economy to stability and prosperity and in the meanwhile, wherever we put this money, Jordan will find a way to spend it. We need to be truthful with the population. Guyanese know that the economy is in dire straits; they can feel it in their pockets; What hope can the ordinary Guyanese feel when the oligarchs in our midst are reduced to hoping for scraps from the oil table. APNU/AFC has failed the businesses and workers of Guyana in equal measure. We are all second-class citizens in our own country; we have achieved Granger’s much-vaunted ‘social cohesion’.
Elections on March 2 are the first of many steps on the road to recovery and prosperity; Guyanese must ensure a message of rejection of the squandermania is sent loud enough to echo for generations. Vote to put an end to APNU/AFC; the most expensive Government in our history whose members are only interested in power, perks and personal gain above all else. There are many hard yards ahead of us as a nation before the damage done by Granger and his personality cult can be repaired, but the time and tide of history are with us.