Mr Irfaan Ali’s victory as the Presidential Candidate of the PPP is no coincidence. I’ve known Mr Ali for over a decade and never has he once failed to impress me with his crude astuteness. Guyana is soon to become a major oil-producing country. With a conservative estimate of over US$200 million in oil windfall for 2020, Guyana is well on track to become the next economic powerhouse of the Caribbean, if all goes well.
The next Government in office will have the huge responsibility of ensuring the nation’s oil wealth not only benefits our current generation but the future. Failure to adhere to pragmatic macroeconomic policies will land us in the hands of the resource curse, and our dream of utopia will become our worst nightmare. Disappearing savings, high unemployment, hyperinflation, crime, corruption and deplorable public services could soon epitomise our nation. The curse, however, is not inevitable.
To elude the curse, we need a visionary leader; one who is bestowed with economics and business shrewdness; one who will defend the rights of the people and ensure the safety of everyone. We need someone who would fearlessly pursue robust and pragmatic macroeconomic policies capable of withstanding any magnitude of economic volatility. We need someone who is capable of completely industrialising our country; and most of all, someone who would bring back hope to our nation. I’m confident that Irfaan Ali would right all the wrongs and set a new standard for statesmanship in Guyana.