Where is the outrage?

Dear Editor,
The wounds of electoral turmoil run deep in the collective memory of Guyanese citizens, still fresh from the prolonged saga of the March 2020 General and Regional Elections. The specter of that five-month delay in declaring results looms ominously, serving as a stark reminder of the fragility of democratic processes. Yet, shockingly, less than four years later, echoes of electoral manipulation resurface, this time not as a cautionary tale but as a brazen suggestion from a former General Secretary of the People’s National Congress (PNC), Hamilton Green.
In a statement that reverberated through the nation, Hamilton Green, a figure with a disreputable political history, openly proposed the utilization of election rigging to unseat the ruling People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Administration. His words, uttered with a chilling nonchalance, encapsulate a dangerous sentiment that threatens the very foundations of democracy in Guyana.
“It was Burnham’s wisdom which got him into office in 1964. And if they say he rigged elections, I say we should keep rigging,” he declared, invoking the legacy of past electoral manipulation as a blueprint for current political strategy.
The audacity of Green’s proposition raises profound questions about the moral compass of Guyana’s political landscape and the integrity of its democratic institutions. Where is the outrage, one might ask, from those who pride themselves on being civic-minded? In a nation where the scars of electoral injustice are still raw, the silence in the face of such brazen advocacy for subverting the democratic process is deafening.
The absence of vocal condemnation from the usually vociferous “civil society” underscores a troubling complacency that threatens to normalize the erosion of electoral integrity. It is a stark reminder that the defense of democratic values requires unwavering vigilance and an unyielding commitment to upholding the principles of fairness and transparency.
The implications of Green’s words extend far beyond the realm of political rhetoric; they strike at the heart of Guyana’s democratic aspirations. To condone or even entertain the notion of election rigging is to betray the trust of the electorate and undermine the legitimacy of the entire political system.
In the face of such blatant disregard for democratic norms, there can be no room for equivocation or ambiguity. The preservation of democracy demands unequivocal condemnation of any attempt to subvert the will of the people through electoral manipulation. It requires a collective commitment to holding accountable those who seek to undermine the integrity of the electoral process, regardless of their political affiliations or past accomplishments.
Hamilton Green’s words serve as a sobering reminder of the fragility of democracy and the constant vigilance required to safeguard it. The true test of Guyana’s commitment to democracy lies not in the words of its politicians but in the actions of its citizens who must rise above partisan interests to defend the fundamental principles upon which their nation was founded.

Alvin Hamilton