Roysdale Forde’s letter smacks of hypocrisy

Dear Editor,
The critique posited by Roysdale Forde in his recent letter, about President Irfaan Ali’s dancing at the PPP/C congress, is frankly a case of misplaced priorities, and a gross misunderstanding of what truly affects the dignity of a democracy. His contention that a simple cultural expression could undermine the gravity of the presidential office is unfounded and smacks of hypocrisy, especially given his party’s sordid political history.
First and foremost, it is imperative to point out the irony in Forde’s concern for presidential decorum. As a vocal defender during the dubious proceedings of the 2020 elections, his sudden pivot to a moral high ground on the “appropriateness” of presidential conduct is laughable. This selective outrage seems more like a political manoeuvre than a genuine concern for democratic values.
If Roysdale is truly worried about the image of leadership and its impact on democracy, he would first address the unresolved shadows over his party’s electoral practices.
Moreover, the idea that President Ali dancing at an event could somehow detract from his ability to address national issues is an overly simplistic view of leadership. Great leaders are multifaceted; they can connect with their people culturally and still handle the rigours of statecraft with utmost seriousness. To suggest that these brief moments of levity could overshadow substantive policy-making is to underestimate the intelligence of the Guyanese people.
It is also critical to dismantle the outdated notion that leaders must always present a stern facade. Authenticity and approachability are assets in a leader who is helping to bridge the gap between the government and its citizens. President Ali’s engagement in a cultural performance does not trivialise his office. Instead, it showcases a leader who is comfortable in his skin, and is capable of sharing a moment of joy with his nation.
In essence, Forde’s argument is not just weak; it’s a diversion from the more pressing issues his political faction might want to avoid discussing. It’s about time he and his colleagues focus on substantive governance and integrity in their party, rather than policing harmless cultural expressions.
President Ali’s dance is not the problem here; the real issue is the audacity of such baseless criticism being used as a political tool. Guyana deserves better than this cynical, hypocritical outrage.

Alfonso De Armas