Unity has vanished

Dear Editor,

Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary celebrations in New York last year made all Guyanese proud. Such unity was never experienced before. Afro- and Indo-Guyanese from Queens and Brooklyn celebrated together in unity. It was a proud moment for Guyanese, although the administration had been changed.

The 50th Anniversary Committee NY is a model for national unity. All major black and Indian leaders were part of it. Mr. Rickford Burke, the chairman, whom Indians perceive as hardcore PNC, earned our respect. The vice chairman, Attorney Rhonda Binda, is a darling of the Queens Guyanese community.

I attended the launch of this committee in Queens. The chemistry seemed genuine. The committee’s performance was exemplary. It hosted events in all communities. I attended the launch, symposium, cricket and parade in Brooklyn.

This year, something very bad has happened: unity has vanished. A little group of about 10 Guyanese from Brooklyn has decided to put on separate Independence anniversary events although the diverse Committee has a diverse, multicultural celebration planned. The private group is mimicking the Committee’s 2017 celebration planned. They’re using the Committee’s strategy to promote their events for the exact same dates the committee has decided upon. No Indians are involved in the activities of this group. We don’t know these people. We never saw them working in the Guyanese community.

Someone forwarded me a letter from this group. They claim they organised the APNU victory march in Brooklyn in 2015. If this is true, no Indian or those who promote unity should support or attend their events.

Their email also announced that President Granger would attend their celebration this year. Their Facebook also claims that Guyana’s New York Consul General told them that have official permission to hold their events.

Queens Guyanese are waiting to see if President Granger would abandon the diverse committee to support this private money-making venture.

A group named NAR, which we believe is the New York PNC group, sent out an email attacking the Committee’s 2017 Independence celebration. Old leopards cannot lose their stripes. But if President Granger wants unity, he wouldn’t condone these unpatriotic traitors, who are unhappy because Indians are on the committee. The committee chairman, who is a PNC member, has not enough fortitude to expose this group and stop the racial division it has created.

Where is the Consul General and Ambassador in Washington while the flames of division and racism burn? If the committee’s events are impeded and the forces of darkness and division and not put down, the Queens Guyanese will have their own celebration. This would further divide the Guyanese diaspora.


D Singh

Richmond Hill,