PRESS RELEASE FLOOD WOES: LUNCHEON’S STATEMENT AND JAGDEO’S ACTIONS – SUBLIMINAL RACIAL POLITICS People’s National Congress Reform Congress Place, Sophia Georgetown, Guyana. Thursday, January 26, 2006

The recent flood woes have become a theater of irony.

Dr Luncheon reporting on a Cabinet meeting referred to the people of West Berbice and the East Coast of Demerara, who had to protest to attract the Government’s attention, as

“unfortunately misguided individuals, who have been encouraged by political demagogues masquerading as friends to engage in illegal and anti-social behaviour”.

Of significant interest is the fact that when the people of Tain and Black Bush Polder, Corentyne, Berbice protested in a similar manner late last year, no such derogatory statement was directed to them or made about them. In fact the PPP/C leaders rushed to their areas and even arranged a PR stunt of a Tassa Drum welcome for the President.

The record will illustrate that the PPP/C uses every protest activity in predominantly Afro-Guyanese communities as an occasion to re-enforce the stereo-typing of Afro-Guyanese as uncultured hooligans and thugs. This stereo-typing was introduced by the colonial masters as they practiced their policy of divide and rule. In so doing they sought to drive a wedge between the freed slaves (African Guyanese) and other Guyanese, the East Indians and Amerindians, in particular. It is this same policy that the PPP/C is pursing as a strategy for retaining the votes of Indo-Guyanese on the basis of race. The PNCR, no matter how unconnected to such activities, is also dragged into the fray as an actor, if not the main actor.

The intention of this approach on the part of the PPP/C is to drive all Indo-Guyanese into the PPP/C camp by identifying the PNCR as the Leaders and the cohorts of “those misguided elements”. If this is not the kernel of racism, then what is?

Having chastised these people through their mouth piece, Luncheon, the PPP/C turns up in the person of Jagdeo as the saviour and greatest care-giver of the same people, who were derogated as “misguided elements”.

This behaviour must be condemned by all right thinking Guyanese. It is duplicity for the PPP/C to stigmatize particular sections of the Guyanese community, while at the same time claiming to be a Party and Government for all.

Wherever injustice is perpetuated and there is need for the representation of people, irrespective of colour, race, creed, class or gender, the PNCR will manifest its presence and stand at the side of the oppressed. The Party will not be influenced by the PPP/C subliminal race politics.

People’s National Congress Reform
Congress Place, Sophia
Georgetown, Guyana.
Thursday, January 26, 2006