This may be my last column
Depending on what happens this Thursday afternoon, this column here may be my last. There are times in life when you enter into challenges because you feel assured and you do not fear loss.
I am entering this challenge here fearing that I will not lose. If I do lose, I will offer an apology to this newspaper that has accommodated me for a very long time, the Guyanese readers who took an interest in my outpourings over the long years and the Guyanese people in general. On the basis of principles, I will resign from writing.
I was a guest on the Naim Chan show on Channel 6 yesterday morning and he asked me if I am a lonely person. I immediately said no. I am happy to be around my family and pets and friends. I have other things to do should I leave the Freddie Kissoon column. Maybe it is time to see more of my country.
Yesterday, I offered an apology to the AFC because what the AFC said of me was quite simple. It went like this. You described an incident involving the AFC that did not occur. You should apologise. I did.
I made an assertion in that apology which was contained in my column yesterday that is important for readers to note and I am asking them to note it.
After writing dozens, and dozens, and dozens of critical comments on the AFC since 2015 and making pellucid accusations against them about things, undemocratic and unfair and improper, which they have done, I have never received a request for an apology except for last Monday’s column.
Below are unambiguous accusations I have made against the AFC. If the AFC can prove that I was wrong and were fictional in all these statements (it must be all), I will apologise and as a matter of ethics in journalism stop the Freddie Kissoon column.
I will not accept a simple, generalised statement from the AFC that these accusations are all false; end of story. No, they have to give evidence to the Guyanese people that I was wrong and way out of line on all counts.
Let me give two examples to begin with. I am firm in my attitude that the AFC has not taken the renewed Cummingsburg Accord to its executive for approval. I will not accept a reaction from the AFC that says; “This is not true.” The AFC has to name the date and place of the meeting and the executives who were there.
This has to be done so I can do my investigation to prove that the AFC was not telling the truth or I am wrong indeed.
Secondly, if I say that Khemraj Ramjattan is not named as prime minister in the renewed Cummingsburg Accord, then the AFC has to disprove me and they have to make the accord public so that the nation can see I was wrong.
I remind readers these accusations are from previous columns since 2015. Here now is the challenge, which the future of this page depends on. Is it true or false to the things I outline below?
1-On choosing its ministers in May 2015 at the AFC’s head office, a certain woman with a doctorate in a science field was asked if she would accept the portfolio of Minister of the Environment, this person not having been known to be associated with the AFC or even campaigned for the AFC.
2-The renewed Cumminsburg Accord has not been submitted to the AFC leadership body, that is, executive committee for its examination and approval.
3-In the renewed Cummingsburg Accord, there is no explicit wording that outlines the name Khemraj Ramjattan as the prime ministerial candidate but rather the wording says that the Prime Minister will come from the AFC.
4-Moses Nagamootoo and Raphael Trotman have not made a public endorsement of Khemraj Ramjattan. By public endorsement, I mean the following, (1)- statement to the press, (2)- utterance at a public forum, (3) use of words to that effect in a place that is considered to be public an distinct from a private sphere.
5-Gita Chandan-Edmond, an AFC member was put on the APNU-AFC list of candidates by APNU and not AFC and her forms were signed at the Office of the President and nowhere else.
6-During Dr. Ramaya’s public expressions of dissatisfaction with the AFC, the AFC leaders discussed in 2016 a recommendation by President Granger that a substantial job should be found for Dr. Ramaya.
7-The PNC leadership asked that the marijuana amendment legislation be put in abeyance.
I could go on but this is a short list. I will not react to the AFC’s answers if there isn’t concrete proof of my wrongness of all the items here. Wish me luck! KN