One of the secrets of 2020 now revealed
Jan 18, 2021 Features / Columnists, Freddie Kissoon
Kaieteur News – It is said that the angles, dimensions, aspects, untold stories and unrevealed secrets of World War 2 are inexhaustible; that there will always be a kept secret or unknown saga to write about. Guyana has its own World War 2. It is the five months of rigging that ended in failure when Dr. Irfaan Ali was sworn in as president.
Two important stories have already been made public by this columnist. The press can publicize these hidden dimensions, not the key players. I guess that will be left for them to highlight when they do their memoirs. One of these two situations is that it was the then chairman of CARICOM, Prime Minister Mia Mottley, who suggested to Granger that the easiest way out of the impasse was to count the ballots all over again and since the ballots are not even half a million then it should be done.
Both Granger and Jagdeo agreed. Granger reneged on the covenant and took refuge behind the explanation that he cannot stop a private citizen from going to court to stop the recount. But it was Granger’s PNC’s candidate, Roysdale Forde, who was arguing the case for the private citizen. This got the Trinidadian PM, Keith Rowley, angry and he washed his hand of the election affair.
The other secret was about the reason why Granger conceded. No diplomat or politician has written on this aspect of the five-month saga. I explained it in my column yesterday so no need to dwell on that subject today.
We come now to an occurrence during the five months of election theatre that has not been publicized. The PNC got some well-placed diaspora Guyanese to contact the Black Caucus of the American House of Representatives to intervene on its behalf. The concoction was simple – the election was rigged to keep a Black government out of power. The PNC was acting in the most naïve manner to think that it can fool highly respected, educated Black congressmen and congresswomen by just telling them something and they would believe the PNC.
The PNC has no idea how the Black Caucus in the US operates. These are lawmakers who have extensive contacts with Black countries including the Caribbean nations. What some members of the Black Caucus did was to rely on the elaborations of two former CARICOM Prime Ministers who they knew intimately – Bruce Golding of Jamaica and Owen Arthur of Barbados.
The members of the Black Caucus who were contacted knew nothing about David Granger, Joe Harmon, Volda Lawrence and Raphael Trotrman. But they knew Bruce Golding and Owen Arthur. The PNC’s venture to bring the Black Caucus on board was an ignominious failure.
One of the sordid stratagems used after this fiasco was to target Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves as a White man. He had replaced Mottley as CARICOM’s chairperson. It was no accident that the only CARICOM head that Eusi Kwayana condemned was Gonsalves. He published a letter in the Guyanese newspapers chastising Gonsalves for speaking on the election results when Gonsalves knew the matter was before the courts. This was yet another episode of Kwayana’s degeneration into the politics of Sydney King.
Having failed to get the Black Caucus to accept that the APNU+AFC won the election, the PNC tried another route to paint the election as Indians versus Blacks. This time Vincent Alexander was the transmission line. I have dealt with this drama in several columns but in the context of the failure to succeed with such a strategy with the Black Caucus, it is useful to repeat it.
The Guyanese chapter of the Year for the people of African Descent wrote the five visiting CARICOM Prime Ministers who came to Guyana during the crisis with the postulation that the March 2020 election has exposed the dangerous ethnic fault lines between Africans and Indians and CARICOM should use that reality to shape a new dispensation in Guyana.
The PMs ignored the advancement for two reasons which the analyst has to look for since the PMs will not address the issue publicly. One is the PMs would have found it bizarre to lend CARICOM’s endorsement to the stoppage of an election which forms the legal basis of how governments come into existence. Secondly, the PMs knew if they had to act then both PNC and PPP would have had to agree. It would have been a waste of time, since the winner, the PPP, would not have endorsed anything except the legal declaration. A footnote is in order. The PNC thought that both CARICOM and the Black Caucus would use ethnic criteria to judge the election outcome. The PNC doesn’t understand the human race.
(The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this newspaper.)