“So, I see this summit, not as a crisis of ideology but this summit is at a time when we have a crisis of humanity, and I urge us to focus on the crisis of humanity and not a crisis of ideologies.”
Those were the words of our dear and beloved President, Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali, during his address to Heads of State at the Summit of South American Leaders hosted by Brazil’s President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva at Itamaraty Palace, the headquarters of the Foreign Affairs Ministry of Brazil.
He may as well be addressing heads of all organisations in Guyana, be it political, cultural, social, religious, business, sports, humanitarian, labour, legal, academic, medical, governmental, non-governmental, private, public, peaceful or otherwise, not as the tenth President of Guyana since being legitimately and legally elected, and not installed in 2020, but, more-so, as the leader and sixth person of the People’s Progressive/ Civic Party to be sworn in as President of the Republic of Guyana.
At such a forum, with an agenda to promote harmony and happiness for humanity, his words would echo the worries Guyanese are currently, unnecessarily and provokingly confronted with.
The PPP/C (since 1.1.1950) has always been, is and will be a Party denouncing, desisting and deviating from the usage of any form of violence, be it physical, mental or psychological. Being people oriented, the party under all their leaders have always protected the interest of the people primarily, over the ideology of the party.
President Ali said, “We must support common interests and not work towards a common ideology but work towards the establishment of a common platform through which we can promote our common interests.”
The Party has always chosen to exercise patience and caution, while settling any issue or dispute amicably, peacefully and without resorting to the usage of duress or threatening behaviour.
This has been its DNA from inception and this trend has gravitated from Dr. Cheddi Jagan to Dr. Ali.
This concept of non-violence has molded the Party and members to respect the law and abide with the constitution, and not to step aside of this discipline.
You can easily identify other parties and individuals who cannot comply with this policy and who openly and unashamedly resort to the reverse of this preference. No wonder President Ali emphasised that, “Everything we do, must secure this Region as a zone of peace, as a Region that upholds democratic values and promotes the rule of law.”
Quoting Dr. Cheddi Jagan in the 1970’s, “It behooves us all, whether Christian or non-Christian, whether theist or atheist, to work for world peace; to recognise representative institutions, the free expression of the people’s will, and the principles of non-intervention, sovereignty and national self-determination, in the conduct of international relations. Only by the observance of these principles can there be progress on a foundation of lasting peace.”
The PPP/C was conceived, created and construed as a multi-ethnic party from its cradle, supported by workers and intellectuals and has continued to confirm to this concept. Interestingly, the Party was formed from the amalgamation of Forbes Burnham’s, “British Guiana Labor Party” and Cheddi Jagan’s “Political Affairs Committee,” noting the merger of an Afro and Indo Guyanese, both of whom wanted to fight the colonial masters for a common cause and united as a team for a “One Guyana,” with the motto of “peace, progress and prosperity” for all Guyanese.
It was Burnham’s split from the PPP Party in 1957 which seeded a racial division and birthed the Afro-Guyanese dominated “People’s National Congress,” led by a calculated, callous and cunning Burnham, who went on to indoctrinate the members to ‘suppress for survival’ and ‘rig for retention.’
As they say, the rest is history and to date, after crossing the floor, many are joining the PPP/C for obvious reasons. The current Leader of the PNC Party would do well in resonating with the advice of the country’s leader, Dr Ali, “Guyana stands committed to the values of ensuring our Region remains a zone of peace, in upholding democratic values and traditions, and promoting the rule of law.”
The world at large, including peace-loving Guyanese who are often led astray by devious, deceitful and daunting leadership, will never forget the barefaced attempt to rig the March 2020 General and Regional Election by the PNC Party in order to retain power at any cost.
This is not a broken record or an out-of-tune song but a golden oldie which will forever remain a favourite to all except the key players who desperately tried to orchestrate the stealing of an election, and by extension, an entire country.
After selling out Guyana for two per cent royalty and 12.5 per cent profit sharing in the most grossly unfair and lopsided agreement with Exxon, it was paramount and pertinent that the PNC must win that mother of all elections.
That precarious and problematic election would have sealed a life time in power for the PNC and their stakeholders would have really enjoyed “the good life” as long as they could have breathe. But, by putting “ideology in front of humanity,” they did put the cart before the horse. Guyana was saved in the nick of time, thanks to so many key players. As that pillar of conscience and protector of democracy Mia Mottley, Barbados Prime Minister and prime witness to PNC’s skullduggery said, “The truth hurts….I have nothing more to say. The truth hurts but what we must never do in CARICOM is to avoid the truth and avoid our principle.”