Who woulda ever thought??! A Trini trying to prove he’s actually a Guyanese!! The heavens gotta be falling…Oh mores!!…Oh tempora!! Your Eyewitness was once hanging out at Curepe Junction, having doubles and coconut water with some Trini friends in the mid-nineties. One of them did something real ignaar, and one friend screamed at him, “Boi!! Yuh behavin’ like a REAL Guyanese!!” That’s right – being Guyanese then was the epitome of being beyond the (civilised) pale!!
Your Eyewitness, of course, is talking about that Trini company operating in Guyana and trying to satisfy our Local Content requirements for his logistics portfolio. Seems that while he has the requisite number of Guyanese hired as workers, and in management positions etc, the ownership structure needs to be 51% red-blooded Guyanese!! Man, your Eyewitness is so proud when he reads that!! Big up the Government for putting it in place!! And this is where the Trini company seems to be playing fast and loose with the law!!
They claim to have a Guyanese who plunked in US$1 million, or Gy$210 million, to pick up 51% of the common shares – and thus become majority owner. The “Guyanese”, however, just happens to be the grandson and son of Guyanese who were born in Guyana but left eons ago for jolly old England. They then picked up some skills over there, and moved down to Trinidad to set up a machining and mechanical repair facility in the 1980s. Pretty much like what that fella did who set up Guysons – but he’d returned directly from England to our dear old mudland!!
THIS Guyanese never ever probably even set foot on Guyanese soil before he came in to apply and pick up his Guyanese passport a year ago!! Still doesn’t live here!! The Trini company is using the LETTER of the law – that the child of a Guyanese born anywhere in the world is a “Guyanese”, and can get a Guyanese passport – as his sole criterion for satisfying the Local Content law!! Now, that’s a bit disingenuous, isn’t it??
Right off the bat, we gotta ask, “What’s the INTENT of the LC Legislation?” Isn’t it that the Guyanese ownership would ensure that the profits earned remain in Guyana to develop Guyana?? Now, all that we’ll get from this “Guyanese owner” is the money he paid for the Guyanese passport!! This can’t be right, can it?? We hear that the Trini company will take the Guyana Govt (by implication) to court. Well, let them bring it on!!
Trinidad passed their Local Content law in 2004 as “Local content & Local participation Policy and Framework” that put ours to shame!!
If it’s war they want, then it’s war they’ll get!!
…in the USA
The dramatic shift of American opinion continues to move rightwards. The most dramatic confirmation just came with their Supreme Court’s reversal of their women’s right to abortion in the first trimester of pregnancy!! This has been a landmark case for 49 years – since 1973 – that signalled a liberal ascendancy in social, cultural, and political matters. If we needed any proof that the wave didn’t end with the ouster of Trump, then this is it!!
We can now expect that Biden will face renewed attacks from a reinvigorated Republican base and party on all their favourite issues – gun control – or lack thereof (which the Supremes expanded a few days before); anti-immigrant legislation; more policing of minorities, etc…etc. And since the dictum that “all politics is local”, he’ll have to shift rightwards overseas – not that he was any liberal, to begin with!!
For us in Guyana, that means he’ll have to quit cosying up to the dictator next door – Maduro – and insist he joins the democratic club – or else!!
…in the Commonwealth
Baroness Scotland of Dominica was returned to the post of Commonwealth Secretary General – just as the group was meeting in Rwanda. It was a stinging rebuff of Britain, who wanted her out.
And lobbied for it!!