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Amid mistakes, gov’t striving to change culture of corruption.

May 13, 2017 Source

Dear Editor,

The realization is clearer every day that this government operates in a fishbowl; sometimes it is one of its own making and it deserves the unrelenting unforgiving attention and excoriations. A high powered searchlight is trained upon it at all times, and what is not seen is either imagined or extrapolated and interpreted to its detriment. Sometimes, it seems not to care.

The government blinks and it is castigated for missing the ball or the bus; it coughs and there is the cry, fear, and recoil of contagion; and should it falter through misstep or miscue, there is the inevitable comparison to the old ways and sordid practices of unforgotten antiquity. The government and its peoples know all of this, and yet it insists, far too many times for comfort, to stumbling and mumbling its way forward.  Sometimes even a mumble is too much to offer to an expectant populace.  It has been negligent and of the contributory variety; it has put its feet in its mouth after wounding itself in both of them.  In everything (everything) this government has to be more circumspect, more chaste than Calpurnia; it must function at a level of impeccable perfection. Yet, many times, it is its own worst enemy.

In all of this, there are those waiting-some well-meaning, some constructive, some palpably malignant-to shout “Fire!” or “Gotcha” or “I de tell yuh suh….”  Sometimes this is accurate; nonetheless, on too many other occasions, it is about overreaction, overkill, and criticism for the sake of criticism.  There is little interest in peering beyond the superficial.  I remind myself that this is the 21st century, and that the easy technology means are at ready fingertips, and the submerged motives in the roiled gut; hence, the verbal revolution, the armchair revolution, or the acidic nostalgic revolution. Not to object or criticize could be interpreted as weakness, or gullibility or, worse yet, covering up and giving a free pass to an undeserving adversary.  There is this insecurity.

From my perspective, some things ought not to have been thought of, much less done; there are too many crucial issues begging for attention and resources.  Examples of negatives from recent to distant include: the Hon. Prime Minister speaking about recusal –I would not have; the law book charges -I would have left alone; I can settle for one adviser, maximum two, but certainly not five; the D’Urban Park business benefits, the China trip, that particular business alliance, that self-remuneration pay package –I would not have touched any of them.  These are some of the self-destructive negatives that obscure bigger visions and diminish larger determined movements painstakingly unfolding.

Editor, there are some other happenings that I find very appealing.  It is where a hard ponderous start has been made by this government to move this society in another direction.  It is where it seeks to reverse this country from a pervasively iniquitous course and to lead the way toward a new order of things.  It is about identifying, decomposing, and sweeping away clandestine, illegitimate privileges of the elites; and of introducing new societal paradigms based on real work, real earnings, real standards, and real integrity.

To be sure, it is a grueling struggle; for there is sturdy resistance semper et ubique in a society anchored in the corrupt and propelled by catapults of criminality.  Today there is yearning for, and glorying of, an era that is best described as execrable, and lacking in any sacrosanct elements.  This government strives (amidst its mistakes) to bring about change in a culture enmeshed in the crooked and entangled in the corrupt.  Its own people, among many others, are now saying, “Why can’t it look the other way?  Why does it have to see everything?  Why does it not live and let others live?  Everyone will prosper; let the Americans fix their problems in their own kitchen.” The words of Machiavelli speak for themselves; they speak to all Guyanese: “there is nothing more difficult to carry out, more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to handle than to initiate a new order of things.”  A close, honest appraisal reveals that this is what is happening here today; that such an initiative-part reversal, part cessation, and part recalibration-all collide jarringly against treacherous shoals of resistant citizens, some of whom are out in the open, many more underground.  It is a new order; a new way of doing business and conducting ourselves.

I am for what is about taking control of this country back from where it ended up; of prying it away from those to whom it was criminally mortgaged; from reversing it out of the hands of those who benefited illicitly; and standing firm against those who fight tooth and nail today for the maintenance of the old sewer of an existence.  It would be helpful to its cause, if this government would stay focused on this arduous campaign, and stop engaging in those other unrewarding and self-destructive exercises.  It would be encouraging to those who see the forest from the trees, those who stand behind it, and those who long for a different and cleaner realm.

Yours faithfully,

GHK Lall

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