How Long More Can the PPP Hoodwink World Powers?

Submitted by Rickford Burke
 

The election impasse between the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) and the opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) persists without mitigation, except a lull for an imminent Supreme court ruling on the sub judice matter. The impasse arose because opposition leader Bharrat Jagdeo and the PPP fraternity, including some private sector actors, are seeking to impose a counterfeit “birthright” to dominance of Guyana.  The actions of this group of “Orwellians” are imperiling the rule of law and democracy.

Their exudation of this contrived supremacy has engendered a specious morality where, for them, the law is malleable and applies to them only on their terms. It is this hegemony of lawlessness which they advance as their concept of “democracy.” In reality, this pathology is the Orwellian Entitlement Syndrome (OES).
Fantasy Superiority:
Their fantasy superior citizenship fuels their drive to manipulate the law on a presumption that they alone control commerce, industry and capital in the country. Their contempt for authority suggests the thinking that such affluence entitles them to domination and,  more so, flagitious conduct. It is no wonder that they attempt to challenge judges who rule against them with impunity. And no wonder they fell they can abuse and threaten police officers who disallow their lawlessness with dismissal, if they return to government.
The masquerader in chief of their apparent junta has committed treasonous acts against the state. He has also threatened to “go after” political opponents and their families presumably with death squads much like the old days. This  insidious rhetoric has aroused sagaciousness in Guyanese. It is easy to recognize that the brazen effrontery is given oxygen by pronouncements from international actors  who’s  irresponsible narrations are talking points provided by PPP  lobbyists.   Someone recently remarked that when the unrest they are instigating begins, which of the instigators will survive? Do we need further evidence of how provocative and combustible this rhetoric is in a volatile environment?
Foreign Observers:
Foreign observers have pronounced that results from Region 4 are “unverified,” because the Returning Officer (RO) did not entertain objections during the vote ascertainment process. The PPP has weaponized these uninformed statements. They purport that “unverified” results are fraudulent results. However, Chief Justice Roxanne George, in her March 11, 2020 judgment, held that the RO must use numbers he received from presiding officers, and that “verification” is not provided for in law.
No doubt, some of the Observers’ pronouncements emboldened Jagdeo and his comrades. They stormed the Elections Commission with guns and inspired riots. Supporters in Region 5, chopped police officers and assaulted innocent citizens and school children.  Victims still await charges and prosecutions of the perpetrators.
The Elections Results:
Declarations by the ten ROs show that the APNU+AFC coalition has won the elections. Chief Elections Officer (CEO), Mr. Keith Lowenfield, has submitted his report to Commission Chairman, Justice Claudette Singh,  and the awaits the final declaration of the results. However, the PPP is insisting on a ballot recount in District 4, although GECOM has already denied all recounts on account of nonconformity to the law. Also, the statutory period for recounts has long expired.
A subsequent CARICOM recount initiative, which was widely viewed as illegal, was halted by the Supreme Court, pursuant to a lawsuit. This case resumed today, March 25, 2020, before Justice Franklyn Holder; who has been subjected to abominable, intimidation attempts and bigoted attacks on his family by PPP websites.
The Law and the Courts:
Our courts exist to interpret and enforce the law. The law proscribes challenges to elections results, except by way of an election petition. The Orwellians believe that they are above the law. Hence, they are circumventing an elections petition and are using the recount provision and court injunctions to challenge the election results. They must not be allowed to manipulate the law and the court for political expediency,  as if the court is a personal football.
The no confidence motion cases saw PPP lawyers eloquently and vociferously arguing that Charandass Persaud’s election to Parliament can only be challenged through an elections petition. Chief Justice Roxanne George and the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) agreed and ruled in their favor. Now, in 2020, they’ve come to the court with a reversed argument.
PPP’s history of subverting democracy and the law:
Laws are constant. They don’t change based on which party is in government or based on a political party’s misfortune. The December 20, 1997 Stabroek news editorial precisely delineated the PPP’s conduct when opposition parties challenged the tabulation of votes in the December 15, 1997 election. Quote: “The Chairman of the Elections Commission, Mr. Doodnauth Singh, yesterday declared the presidential candidate of the People’s Progressive Party, Mrs. Janet Jagan, the duly elected President of Guyana even though the final count of votes was not complete and the votes in quite a number of boxes remained to be counted,” end quote.
In the December 15, 1997 elections, PPP Returning Officers refused to “verify” SOPs and denied all requests for recounts. They merely declared the results and closed the process. When word leaked that the opposition PNCR was seeking an injunction to stop the declaration of the results, the PPP secretly and unlawfully swore Mrs. Janet Jagan in as President, while votes were still being counted. Mrs. Jagan and her bodyguards later assaulted the chief marshal of the Supreme Court who served her with the injunction, which she pitched to the ground. Where was their commitment to democracy and the rule of law then?
The law in 2020 is the same as 1997:
Subsequently they made substantial submissions to the court detailing why the court lacked jurisdiction to hear the matter except when the PNCR files an elections petition to challenge the elections results. Now they have abandoned this mantra which they intrepidly proclaimed in 1997 and in 2019. Ironically, the PNCR filed an election petition, which was heard by then Supreme Court Justice Claudette Singh – the incumbent Chairman of GECOM.
Justice Singh vitiated the December 15, 1997 elections results and ordered fresh elections.
Guyana is a functioning democracy with an independent and efficient judiciary. The judicial process must be allowed to function without external interference. The process worked in 1997 and in 2019 when the court ruled against the government in the no confidence vote.
Interference in the elections:
Western countries must not be allowed to abrogate the mandate of the courts of Guyana to themselves. Statements like “a transition of government…would be unconstitutional”… without Guyanese  courts so ruling, and ..regardless of how the Guyana Supreme Court rules the installation of a new government based on the declared results will be deemed illegitimate..’ must be rejected. Guyana is a sovereign, democratic state. Interference in Guyana’s elections, to tip the scale for a particular party, as well as preemption of its courts, violate international law.
The court is arbiter of elections disputes:
This elections matter is before our courts. Guyana’s history of obeying judgments of the court has enriched our democracy. GECOM, not the government, controls the elections process. The Orwellians hiding behind the skirts of diplomats and calling for sanctions to hurt Guyanese and destabilize the Caribbean, are the same dastardly cowards who perpetrated genocide in Guyana.
Their foreheads are marked from their crimes of extrajudicial killings, gun and drug smuggling and money laundering. But for how long can their lobbyist, Mercury, hoodwink world powers? How long more can the Orewllians play deceptive games in the arena of international politics? We will see!

21 comments

  • As I have said let the courts decide the matter. Both sides have the right to file injunctions .Surely it cannot be fair for one side to file injunctions and everything is deemed honky-dory, but it is deemed as underhand when the other side files for injunctions. I again ask what was the role of the Canadian government in the whole affair that started this whole thing. I say again that the Amerindians should expel both groups from their country.

    Like

  • @Dr. Lucas

    You are being naive about the issue affecting Guyana. Everybody has the right to file. However we know the underlying issues remain the same as they have for the last 50 years. Three weeks since an election and what. Nothing has changed court ruling to come or not.

    Like

  • @ David March 26, 2020 5:49 AM

    In what way? I am aware of the race problem. All I am saying is that both sides should be able to file without there being noise about one side being underhand and the other side squeaky clean.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @Dr. Lucas

    Long after th decision is handed down the racial and political divisions will continue to hamper progress in Guyana. The court case is a continuing manifestation, the warts that have become cancerous.

    Like

  • @ David March 26, 2020 6:14 AM

    You have a point. That is why Guyanese of both races have fled the country. It is a pity that the original inhabitants are not in a position to drive them out. As I said previously I expect a civil(race)war.

    Like

  • @Dr. Lucas

    What a shame given its natural resources. Guyana is a big let down to compromising the Caricom experience.

    Like

  • USA justice dept indicts Venezuelan President Maduro on drug trafficking charges

    Like

  • Los Angeles Times

    https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2020-03-26/justice-department-indict-venezuela-president-nicolas-maduro-on-federal-drug-trafficking-charges

    Nicolas Maduro, the president of Venezuela, has been indicted on U.S. federal drug-trafficking charges, a major escalation in the Trump administration’s campaign to force Maduro from power, according to a federal official briefed on the matter.

    Like

  • @ Robert Lucas,
    There is no need for a civil war. As I have already indicated it would make more sense if the country were partioned into three. The only question that remains would be how could this be equitably achieved.

    Like

  • @ TLSN March 26, 2020 12:22 PM

    Let me repeat what I have stated else where on this Blog: 96 percent for the Amerindians and three percent each for the others. Any noise by the others should result in them being ejected all together.

    Like

  • By Staff Editor March 26, 2020

    On behalf of the U.S. government, Acting Assistant Secretary for U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs Michael G Kozak today summoned Guyana’s Ambassador to the US Riyad Insanally to warn against the illegal installation of a government here.

    On his Twitter feed, Kozak said: “I summoned #Guyana Ambassador to the U.S. Riyad Insanally to convey our firm position that any government sworn in based on flawed election results would not be legitimate. Every vote must be counted”.

    It is the latest high-level intervention by a US government official over fears that GECOM may attempt to swear in President David Granger again despite widespread reports of fraud in the region Four tallying.

    Kozak had previously warned of consequences of electoral fraud.

    https://www.stabroeknews.com/2020/03/26/news/guyana/us-summons-guyana-ambassador-to-warn-against-illegal-swearing-in/

    Like

  • Why the hell doesn’t the US stop meddling in the internal affairs of other countries? It has no moral authority to condemn any country.

    Like

  • @ robert lucas March 27, 2020 2:18 AM
    “Why the hell doesn’t the US stop meddling in the internal affairs of other countries? It has no moral authority to condemn any country.”
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Is that you, Bricky??? Lol!!

    Now is the time for some form of American-imposed racial entente cordiale in that politically cursed but resources-blessed country formerly called B G as a result of Covid and with the oil bonanza pipedream about to burst.

    How about making Guyana ‘great again’ as it was up to the 1960’s attracting thousands of immigrants of various racial hues including Bajans to its developing industries and fields of natural riches?

    What do you think would happen if Venezuela- as a way to get back at the bully farther North- invades Guyana under the guise of national security arising from the current political instability and racial divisiveness which could lead to the breakup of the nation state called ‘English-speaking’ Guiana?

    Which Caricom ‘nation state’ is up next on the podium of racial strife and political apartheid?

    Trinidad to trigger the breakup of Caricom as every ‘island’ dog begins to fight for its own share of the remaining economic bones stripped of the tourism meat by Covid-19?

    As you are quite aware, any geographical dividing-up of Guyana along ethnic lines (as you are proposing) would be the silver bullet to rip apart the wider Caribbean and put a time bomb under the regional integration project called Caricom in which only a politically-stable Guyana can perform as a ‘grandmaster’ player.

    Like

  • William Skinnet

    @ Robert Lucas
    The same way CARICOM leaders correctly intervened and tried to bring some calm to the situation in Guyana , it’s time for the same leaders to tell the USA that whatever government is declared to be duly elected will be legitimate and not dependent on any validation from the USA. All progressive forces must watch this development closely. CARICOM did not tell Florida how to count votes or the USA government to halt voter suppression especially against blacks.

    Like

  • @ William Skinner March 27, 2020 9:16 AM

    Agreed.

    Like

  • @ Miller March 27, 2020 8:12 AM

    Have you ever heard of a partisan war. In those jungles. It is great for ambushes. So watch yourself if you side with the enemies of the Amerindians

    Like

  • Bharrat Jagdeo and the PPP are the antithesis of democracy that they now clamor for

    Guyana’s Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo possesses considerable skills as a politician. As president of Guyana, he displayed and utilized autocratic tendencies, didn’t care much for the independence of GECOM except when it served his purpose of never holding local government elections in the 12 years he was president or the 4 years as puppeteer for Donald Ramotar’s marionette of a presidency.

    Jagdeo amassed immense wealth while in office and has become one of Guyana’s wealthiest citizens all of this in stark contrast to his humble beginnings. This was not lost on many of his PPP cabinet members, operatives and those with political connections. They also became fabulously wealthy as is the case of the PPP’s current presidential candidate Irfan Ali, who as Minister of Housing, also came from hard scrabble beginnings but now owns a palatial residence. Unexplained wealth, corruption, bribery, graft, money laundering, narco-trafficking and any means of pillaging the national coffers became the hallmark of successive PPP administrations. Those activities operated side by side the death squads and disappearance of over 400 Blacks and to a lesser extent poor Indians and those who stood in their way, such as Minister of Agriculture, Sash Shaw whose murder was never solved and happened on Jagdeo’s watch.

    It is important to understand that what we see playing out in real time with the dispute over the March 2nd elections, for Jagdeo and the PPP it has more to do with who controls Guyana’s new found oil wealth, access to power and Indian triumphalism than democracy and integrity of the electoral process. The PPP admitted in their eyes, there were no Black Guyanese to represent the country as foreign ambassadors overseas. Lest we forget, it was less than five years ago that America, Britain, Canada and the European Union labeled Guyana a narco-state racked by endemic corruption and money laundering during successive PPP administrations and was on the verge of international sanctions for failure to comply with anti-money laundering laws.

    Now, every right thinking Guyanese must ask themselves if the country is no longer labeled a narco-state under the APNU government and no longer face the threat of international sanctions, what happened?

    The PPP had a plan to regain office the day they were voted out. The very GECOM that is now being vilified suddenly became important to the PPP in the name of holding local and regional elections. PPP knew that due to the numerical superiority of their Indian support base, they should win but were concerned about decreased support from that demographic due to high emigration. GECOM’s bloated list of electors (registered voters) became a gold mine. In a country with a population of less than 800,000 there are over 600,000 registered voters or nearly 80% of the population? The overall participation rate in the March 2, 2020, on a day declared a national holiday was approximately 65%. Even when controlling for crossover votes (very little), which is infinitesimal as evidenced by the totals received by each of the other smaller parties who competed nationally; in areas that PPP won, support approached 85-93 percent. That is an amazing feat…if true. The PPP had to show enormous gains of 2.5 to 3 times the number of votes APNU received in other areas to blunt the deluge that they would face in region 4, Guyana’s largest population center and support base of the APNU. Based on PPP’s own data, they expect Guyanese to believe that they gained over 10,000 cross-over votes, APNU gained less than 500 and the other parties gained a statically insignificant amount of votes in region 4.

    Enter the relationship of Jagdeo and Mercury Public Affairs (MPA). Mercury, no stranger to controversy and involvement with the Russian interference of the 2016 American elections, set about rehabilitating the image of Jagdeo and the PPP. Jagdeo who will do anything at all cost in order to amass more wealth, is the same person who attempted to hire convicted felon Bernard Kerik (at the time was arrested and under indictment) to lead the Guyana Police Force and reform that agency around the time of the death squads. Mercury has aggressively lobbied the current American administration and members of Congress as well as worked closely with the OAS, who by the way has a lot to account for in the removal of president Evo Morales of Bolivia ( https://wwwcommondreams.org/news/2020/02/27/oas-has-lot-answer-new-study-disputes-key-claim-paved-way-right-wing-coup-bolivia). Mercury’s game plan was for PPP to declare themselves the winners of the election, claim electoral fraud against the sitting government and accuse their opponents of corruption being worse than the PPP. In other words, present a false binary choice to the Guyanese people.

    Over a year ago, Jagdeo and his handlers (MPA) without evidence of polling data or research, started laying the narrative of PPP as winners of the coming election after the Charandass no confidence vote in Guyana’s parliament. Jagdeo has a ubiquitous media presence in the Guyanese and international media scape that easily dwarfs President Granger’s and the APNU. In this regard I believe Mr. Granger has been poorly served and is surrounded by incompetents who have not vigorously pushed back against Jagdeo and the PPP who ran Guyana like a criminal enterprise during their time in office. As a matter of fact, Jagdeo and the PPP have made direct and specific threats to business owners who they view as APNU supporters and is said to be compiling a list of enemies to go after should they accede to office.

    Jagdeo and Mercury Public Affairs have operated a misinformation and disinformation campaign to play the Guyanese people for suckers with the end goal of Jagdeo installing his second hand picked puppet as president to rape and pillage Guyana’s oil wealth. Should this happen, expect Jagdeo to have the Constitution changed for him to serve as president again, much like Putin did in Russia.

    Make no mistake, the $34 million dollars that Jagdeo (and his “investors”) have admitted paying Mercury will seem like pocket change and a shrewd investment compared to what they will reap over the next 20 years while Guyanese will be worse off with Jagdeo and his band of kleptocrats in office. To prevent this from happening, Mr. Granger must continue to abide by the Constitution, the Courts and GECOM being the only duly authorized independent body that can declare the results of the elections.

    Like

  • Dear David: Who is the author of the above essay?

    Like

  • @William Skinnen March 27, 2020 9:16 AM “CARICOM did not tell Florida how to count votes or the USA government to halt voter suppression especially against blacks.”

    Perhaps CARICOM should have. Perhsaps CARICOM should still do so.

    Wrong is wrong whether in Guyana, lorida, the United States or Barbados.

    We understand that CARICOM is not a military nor political threat to the USA, but when the USA does wrong, CARICOM should raise its voice, even if it cannot raise arms nor economic muscle.

    Like

  • @Simple Simon

    Thanks

    Like

  • William Skinner

    @ Silly Woman
    Let us not forget that when it was in their interest, the USA had military bases in Barbados and Trinidad. That was when it did not want us to become too cozy with Cuba. Also don’t forget the invasion of Grenada. Once the Cold War between the USA and Russia faded; the US had no more real interest in the region. You will note it’s hand now in Venezuela- there is oil there. We must also pay attention to the recent oil take off in Guyana. CARICOM may not be a super power but at certain times position is the art of gunnery.
    However your point is well taken.

    Like

Join in the discussion, you never know how expressing your view may make a difference.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s