Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Being led to slaughter like silent lambs

 When the Reshmi Ramnarine issue arose, most were silent. When we had missteps, most were silent. When platform promises were broken, again many were silent. There was no louder silence than that which emanated from the legal fraternity. Then came the slight to the President during the Chinese visit, “emailgate” and the Section 34 issues, and again most were silent. 

We had the dual engine numbers and the “prisongate” debacles; we have seen videos and LifeSport scandals all together with uncurbed mega spending without accountability against a backdrop of reported massive cost overruns and unaccounted expenditures, as reported by the Auditor General; we dropped more than 20 points on the corruption index and, still, silence.

We observed a total lack of objectivity and good judgment by our Prime Minister, as those whom she had selected lost their knighted integrity one by one. Unabated crime waves, murderous sprees, which even engulfed one of this country’s finest legal minds, a failed health sector and a decomposing education ministry (some schools remain unopened since September 2013) and still silence, though all these were promised to be rectified by this present administration.

Now we have a constitutional amendment which appears sinister at best, as some of the proposed amendments were never discussed during the meetings held by the Minister of Legal Affairs, implying a level of deceitfulness or, at best, untruthfulness by this administration as it forces undisclosed constitutions upon us; and again, many are silent.

Ironically, an untainted outsider, in the form of the St Lucian Prime Minister, has made his voice loud and clear in denouncing this attack on our Constitution, yet our Chamber of Commerce, Law Association, Business Association, NGOs and even our President has remained silent ad nauseam. No thought as to how these changes will affect our expenditure and economy, as we could have many “run-off” re-elections at massive cost to our treasury. They have implied a false “recall” as it can only occur after three years. This will entail an eligibility count, a voting process and tabulations which can all past the remaining two years, making this so-called recall another attempt at deceiving an unsuspecting citizenry. 

The fixed election date will disbar the citizenry the option of gaining a governmental “recall” similar to that which may occur in Guyana as a vote of no confidence appears eminent. If this is removed, then what good is a ministerial “recall”? Foolish is it not.

In a party-oriented country such as ours, a two-term prime minister will make little sense, as the remaining party members will emanate little difference as they continue the same mandate and practices as their past leader. This entire sleight of hand is to fool the masses into believing something substantial is being done; even prominent radio announcers have been hoodwinked by these apparent snake oil charlatans. This silence is so reminiscent of the poem by Pastor Martin Niemöller, “First They Came”. Calypsonian Gypsy sang “Soul of the Nation” in 1999 and “Little Black Boy” in 1997, but it would appear he no longer cares for the little black boys.

Will we all continue to remain silent while our future is headed for genocide? I pray people will stop being selfish, religiously or racially blinded, and begin to be mature, conscious and honest enough to rise out of their complacency and stop believing what affects another today will not affect me tomorrow.

So like silent lambs, we are all been led to the slaughter; the more things change, the more they remain the same.

R Beddoe