The time is now for some form of power sharing or national front gov’t
One week after that controversial no-confidence motion and vote, Guyana has assumed the solemnity, humility, and sanctity of a countrywide confessional. It might not be an exaggeration to state that almost all Guyana is stricken with the alien behaviours of self-examination and soul-searching. From government to commentators to insiders and outsiders and adversaries, it is the same hand-wringing, hair-pulling, and breast-beating. The local mother tongue of the moment has a Latinate ring and flavour: mea culpa.
My first thought is: perhaps we may get somewhere. The second is: sez who? Count me among the completely cynical, the thoroughly disbelieving that this society possesses the calibre of character, the iron will and purpose to venture into the unknown through the personally and collectively self-sacrificing (so many times unrewarding). To the political newcomers, I say sorry; but this is the comprehensive nature of the disquiet that imbues. Crosshairs it may be; but this country still is not at a particularly demanding fateful crossroads. This is especially relevant to all those lovelies-suddenly loud, suddenly brave, suddenly public, and with many government voters numbered among them-who denounce government’s litany of failures. Indeed, there were many of such: didn’t listen, didn’t care, didn’t do homework, they are right. Having said this, how many of these government supporters and critics will be going anywhere else on the ballot paper whenever that time comes? After an abbreviated four years, I consider such unreasonable; after sixty years of mechanical, racial, emotional voting, who is going to take a chance? Even with the arriving aspirants, and disappointment and all?
And after nearly twenty years of pure unmitigated disasters at the hands of the prior government, who is ready to jump ship? Which one out there (on that side) is about to abandon that smelly leaky vessel plagued by two decades of the progressively conscienceless? Which opposition devotee is ready to turn away from that long dark night? I submit that Guyanese voting segments and the Guyanese voting nation lack the requisite moral, ethical, and cerebral features to weigh and decide to drive this society to a fresh new place and horizon. Regrettably, but realistically, I do not
foresee any change in the political landscape; the result would be the new people not attracting many to their banner. Already, the woodwork crackles with naysayers and historians reminding of the past. It is not what they offer; but what they were. Somehow, local voter memory is shamelessly selective in this regard.
In view of the numerically delicately poised situation, and perceived voter intransigence, through insubstantial departures toward the new, where does this leave matters? I assert that it is the old sad song and story. The more things change around here, the more they remain immovable and untouched. Deplorable, too. I chalk this up to the nature-cultivated, settled, and radicalized-of the homegrown domestic monster. Ergo, the same inevitable results that have brutalized. To be sure, one group may lose some votes, but not enough to make a difference. Victory by default, I term it. And the sister group, even if it ekes out a handful more than before, will discover that it needs more to clear the top. Thus, I resurrect a formula from the early days of this century (and my writings); I believe that the time is now for some form of power sharing or national front governing apparatus. Everybody ought to be happy temporarily. In a sop to the electorate, and on the face of things, no segment is cheated or marginalized. I can see the foreigners rejoicing cautiously.
The two dominant shadows (spectres, really) are able to fall in love publicly. Make clandestine matters official. Everyone wins; even when the reality is an electoral draw. Now there is a catch to all of this: another unpalatable surprise lying in store in 2019 (or whenever) for the expectant: they know not what they ask for. They ain’t seen nothing yet. The history lived has been of the great deception (23 years), and the great disorientation (not quite 4 years). Going forward, Guyanese now anticipate this miraculous great transformation. It is an escapist world in which citizens thrive over here; a politician’s dream come true. In all of this, I am reminded of Phaeton’s chariot: citizens are onboard; they think they control the reins. Alas, they lack input and influence as to either direction or destination, as well as security, too. It is the ultimate politician’s dream come true, one lived and relived cycle after cycle. Yours faithfully, GHK lall