Char­ran­das Per­saud’s ac­count and oth­ers paint a pic­ture of pos­si­ble will­ful col­lu­sion with the very PPP he cam­paigned against

Stabroek News Sunday - - LETTERS -

Dear Ed­i­tor, In or­der not to add fuel to the fire that rose up af­ter the Char­ran­das Per­saud no con­fi­dence vote, I chose to re­main silent on a few things that have been in the pub­lic do­main, in­clud­ing commentary on my own ac­tions. Con­sid­er­ing how­ever that cer­tain mis­rep­re­sen­ta­tions are be­ing re­peated as record, stay­ing silent is no longer an op­tion.

I have pub­licly ad­dressed and apol­o­gized for my re­ac­tive out­burst in ut­ter­ing an ex­ple­tive in the Na­tional Assem­bly. This was clearly out of char­ac­ter with my usual con­duct and an emo­tional re­sponse to the be­trayal from a trusted col­league who I’ve spent the past three and a half years with, in­clud­ing dur­ing the re­cent bud­get de­bate, de­fend­ing the poli­cies of this ad­min­is­tra­tion.

I’ve had time dur­ing the past week to try to un­der­stand Char­ran­das’ mo­ti­va­tion for what he did and his jus­ti­fi­ca­tions of­fered and none of it seems to make sense. On a per­sonal level, two things he has said so far have struck me per­son­ally. The first is the claim that I as­saulted him and that his ribs still hurt from my el­bow­ing him. The very video that he re­ferred per­sons to shows me nudg­ing him with the back of my hand to get his at­ten­tion in the wake of the shock of his vote, not el­bow­ing him. Why would some­one, in jus­ti­fy­ing a vote of con­science and speak­ing about his own in­tegrity, en­gage in such an eas­ily dis­proved un­truth to sup­port his case? The other is­sue that hit on a per­sonal level was that in his telling of this fic­tion, Char­ran­das, my coali­tion po­lit­i­cal and par­lia­men­tary col­league of three and a half years, re­ferred to me as sim­ply “that Rasta boy from Lin­den.”

For me, these things don’t square with the char­ac­ter of in­tegrity that he has been paint­ing him­self as, and there are other examples. There was his claim that he wrote to Al­liance For Change leader, Raphael Trot­man to protest his dis­plea­sure at cer­tain ac­tions. When Mr. Trot­man re­futed those claims, he changed his story to say that he spoke to Trot­man and was ig­nored. The Clerk of the Na­tional Assem­bly, Mr. Sher­lock Isaacs, him­self had to cor­rect claims of bias al­leged against him by Char­ran­das in a re­cent let­ter to the news­pa­per.

Per­haps most im­por­tantly how­ever is that his own words in Par­lia­ment de­fend­ing the re­cent bud­get made the sort of sense that his sub­se­quent claims don’t. He spoke force­fully, for ex­am­ple, about the cap­i­tal ex­pen­di­ture in Ber­bice, the per­ma­nent im­prove­ment of roads that the PPP would plug bil­lions into and which still would need fix­ing. He spoke about the sev­er­ance pay­ment to su­gar work­ers in an in­dus­try that the PPP crip­pled and then left the bur­den on the APNU+AFC to fix.

I find it dif­fi­cult there­fore to be­lieve that the web of mis­in­for­ma­tion that my for­mer col­league has af­ter­ward tried to spread is only in­ci­den­tal to the web of dis­in­for­ma­tion that is be­ing spread by the op­po­si­tion and their aligned me­dia. For ex­am­ple, just as Clerk Isaacs had to cor­rect Char­ran­das, he was also forced to cor­rect a story car­ried in the Jagdeo-con­trolled Guyana Times.

This brings me to the over­looked as­pect of Char­ran­das’ nar­ra­tive about the cir­cum­stances sur­round­ing his sup­port of the PPP’s no con­fi­dence mo­tion. If one were to lis­ten to his and com­ple­men­tary ac­counts of his con­science nar­ra­tive, and fac­tor in the events of that fate­ful night a week ago, we see a pic­ture of pos­si­ble will­ful col­lu­sion with the very PPP that he cam­paigned against. From the sup­posed con­ver­sa­tion with Freddie Kis­soon ear­lier this year, to his own in­di­ca­tion that he was long con­tem­plat­ing vot­ing against the ad­min­is­tra­tion, it ap­pears that he was long privy to a PPP no con­fi­dence mo­tion be­fore it was even tabled or an­nounced in Novem­ber of this year. This combined with his claim that he trusted no one, in­clud­ing his long- time friend Min­is­ter of Pub­lic Se­cu­rity, Khem­raj Ram­jat­tan, with his se­cu­rity but yet was han­dled by a PPP mem­ber from the mo­ment he left Par­lia­ment to the mo­ment he left the coun­try shows that his trust was placed some­where.

What nei­ther Char­ran­das and the PPP lead­er­ship, Mr. Jagdeo in par­tic­u­lar, have been asked is whether there was co­or­di­na­tion be­tween the AFC mem­ber and the PPP op­po­si­tion. Did Jagdeo go into Par­lia­ment know­ing fully well that his mo­tion would find the sup­port of Char­ran­das specif­i­cally and if there was this co­or­di­na­tion, what was the ba­sis of it, and how long ago was it planned?

This is a ques­tion that, for all his no­ble claims of good con­science, the man has – even in the midst of all his de­lib­er­ate mis­rep­re­sen­ta­tion – re­fused to even ad­dress, much less deny.

It is quite ev­i­dent Ed­i­tor that Mr Per­saud is patho­log­i­cally men­da­cious and prob­a­bly some­day his con­science will force him to give a full and proper ac­count of this miss­ing as­pect of his story. Yours faith­fully, Jer­maine Figueira APNU+AFC Mem­ber of Par­lia­ment.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Guyana

© PressReader. All rights reserved.