by Stella Ramsaroop
(Originally published in Guyana's Kaieteur News on 16 March 2006)
In my column from last Sunday, I suggested that Guyana would be better off with some obscure farmer than with the current administration. I received more email responses for this article than almost any other. With the exception of Peeping Tom’s column and one other person, the rest of the respondents understood what I meant and agreed with me.
Therefore, I thought it would be wise to spell things out for my fellow columnist so he can better understand my initial point.
Firstly dear Peeps, please don’t assume that my reason for making such a statement is solely based on the recent remarks made by the President. In fact, it is a culmination of continuous incompetence that drives me to wish that someone else – anyone else – was leading the country.
In fact, my intended point was to show that if the people of Guyana voted for a farmer that is not known among the political elite (obscure), I have no doubt whatsoever in my mind that he/she would do far better than the current leader of the nation.
One of the emails I received on this column said, “It could still happen - maybe not a farmer but a complete unknown individual. I have written for years in the letter column about the need for new leadership. Of course, the citizens are blinded by the notion that leadership only comes from seasoned politicians.”
Whether Peeps or the PPP (or the PPP’s Peeps) want to admit it, there is a definite grass roots movement that desperately desires a people’s government for Guyana. It is only a matter of time until this happens. I believe it will be this election year.
The same email also said, “Guyana needs a stimulus - our people are dynamic. They just need that first STEP. Which is always filled with uncertainties.” I couldn’t agree more with this person. When Guyana takes that first step to get rid of politics as usual - that is when things will finally turn around for this country.
So Peeps, unless the President and his government have ensured the country that it won’t flood again next year, instituted a friendly environment for both local and foreign investment, gotten the crime situation in hand, revamped the educational system and declared war on the drug trade – all by election time this year, then yes, I do think this country would be far better off with an obscure farmer than its current leader.
Come on now Peeps, this administration has had over a decade to turn this country around, so they cannot blame the PNC for the current plight of the Guyanese people. The PPP needs to stop being childish take full responsibility for its own incompetence instead of trying to constantly push the blame elsewhere.
Educated or not, I think if the PPP were able and willing to help Guyana, they would have done so by now. Therefore, I will continue to call for obscure farmers – or as my email friend stated so well, a completely unknown individual – to take over the reigns of the country and do something good for the people for a change. Peeps said in his column about me, “She can however do better than suggesting a farmer for President.” I’m not too sure about that Peeps. After all, where has all of Jagdeo’s economic education gotten the nation?
Peeps also suggested that perhaps I thought a Ramsaroop would do a wonderful job as president. Silly Peeps, I am not an obscure farmer. Although I understand that my family on my father’s side a couple generations ago use to farm.
Even if I were a farmer, I would still never run for president because I think it would be highly improper for someone who was born and raised in the United States to be the highest leader in Guyana. I just don’t think a girl from the Midwest should have the right to be president of a country in South America. I wouldn’t mind being president of the US though, but I have far too much fun on this side of the journalistic divide.
Perhaps you were actually speaking of another Ramsaroop instead of me. Maybe one who was born in Guyana, like my brother-in-law? However, my brother-in-law is certainly not obscure and he is far from being a farmer. I’m not even sure he has a green thumb, so I couldn’t have been referring to him either.
Having clarified my position a little more, I want to spell this out as clearly as possible for you, Peeps. Guyana needs someone who will put the needs of the people as the highest priority for his/her administration. The PPP and Jagdeo have had a very long 13 years to prove they were up to the job, but they have instead proven the exact opposite.