Riding with hounds…

…on SARA
You don’t need flambeau to see in daylight. So those who could actually announce “SARA – a bold and vital instrument” after the Bill had been passed last Thursday night, had to have some defect in their eyes. Or maybe closed them as they strove mightily to ride with the hounds and run with the hares? After 50 years of “independence” can we still disjuncture means from ends and pretend that the former doesn’t inevitably colour – if not actually become – the latter??
Of course, we need laws and institutions to go after corruption and pilfering of State assets. But didn’t the SARA raid on the Enmore NDC – even before the Bill had been passed – suggest a portent of ominous things to come? When an administration aggressively challenges the Constitution – and its decades-old interpretation – to appoint a “fit and proper” GECOM Chair, can we accept its cavalier dismissal of the GHRA’s call for SARA’s Director and Deputy to be “ring fenced”?
Folks have given their lives so that the Executive shouldn’t traduce the rule of law to oppress the citizens of Guyana. So, do we need to be reminded that while some may believe the PPP Opposition are the scum of the earth, they’re still Guyanese? And that whatever law we’ve crafted – whether ad hominem or not – to “get them”, these can still be used against the rest of us? First, they came for the PPP….We have to look past our personal bitterness and look to the future of the Republic.
How can we pretend the Director isn’t a “creature” – as a past leader of the PNC once put it – of the Executive by having his appointment be approved by a “majority” of the Legislature – as opposed to being appointed by the Executive? Back in primary school, we learnt the theorem – “things equal to the same thing are equal to one another”. So, if the Executive all sit in the legislature – including the official rep of the President – isn’t separating them a distinction without a difference? Who do you think you’re fooling, you sneaky thing!!??
The referendum in Turkey and its fiddling should alert us to the new wind that’s blowing like the old wind that ushered in a slew of authoritarian rulers like Burnham back in the seventies. As citizens who painfully emerged from authoritarian excesses, we have to develop a well-nigh reflexive rejection of its practices whenever they pop up.
The people placed in charge of SARA, the modus operandi adopted, and the powers conferred demand we take a stand.
To do otherwise is to court certain (democratic) death.

…no more
It was unfortunate because the Burnhamite dictatorship laid us so low, so many of us had to flee to foreign shores. Of course, we did better than back in Guyana! Every other place than Haiti was doing better than us. How could we not? But now that things are unravelling in some of those places, our Guyanese compatriots are between a rock and a hard place. This was highlighted recently by our new Ambassador to Venezuela – Ms Cheryl Miles.
Venezuela is now probably in as big a fix as we were during Burnham’s days. But your Eyewitness thought the Ambassador should’ve gone beyond merely pointing out some citizens are returning home. With the Venezuelans also coming on aggressively against us over the oil in our waters, it’s only a matter of time before Guyanese there will be targeted.
We need to have a policy in place to bring back our citizens and resettle them in their native Guyana. We are our brothers’ keepers!!

…or the wind
Prezzie said we’re the only people in the Caribbean who fly kites on Easter. In the spirit of historical accuracy and Caribbean solidarity – lest we be told “Go fly a kite!!” – we have to point out that so do the Bermudans.