PRESS RELEASE PNCR INDEPENDENCE DAY MESSAGE MAY 26 2008 People’s National Congress Reform Congress Place, Sophia Georgetown, Guyana. Friday, May 23, 2008


MAY 26 2008

On the significant occasion of the 42nd Anniversary of Guyana’s Independence the People’s National Congress Reform joins all Guyanese at home and abroad in appropriate observances of this milestone.

Let us take particular note of the fact that as we observe this milestone our country is definitely showing signs of regression and all Guyanese, who love their country, must pause and ponder over what must be done, as a matter of urgency, to ensure that the path to racial harmony, economic development and social progress, which were evident in the early years after independence, is resumed in this dear land of ours.

We are convinced that no right thinking Guyanese can be happy or even comfortable in the face of the manifold and evident challenges and difficulties facing the nation at this time. Unless these challenges and difficulties are tackled with aggression and purpose, they threaten to overwhelm all our efforts at nation building.

No one can doubt that the political climate in this country has deteriorated as a result of the lack of continuous political dialogue and earnest attempts to implement decisions flowing from whatever limited dialogue there has been. The ruling PPP/C Administration seems content with occupying all political space and remembers other stakeholders only at times of heightened crisis.

The economic growth which was evident when the PNC left office in 1992 has run its course. The Judiciary is under threat, as is the freedom of expression. Major social problems have emerged as a result of the insidious drug culture which has fuelled the trade in arms to the bitter cost of this nation. It is in this year in which we observe the 42nd Anniversary of Independence that the horror and savagery of Lusignan and Bartica loom large in the background. These observances are taking place at the very moment when the economic crisis seems to have gripped Guyana and this is taking a toll on the most vulnerable elements of this society, the elderly and the young people.

The PNCR on this occasion has not been moved to register this catalogue of difficulties and challenges merely for partisan political reasons but more particularly as part of an effort to force this nation to do some sober reflection on how to reach a determination of what political road lies ahead. Because the Party has made an assessment of these difficulties, it has over the last decade, been working very hard on plans and programmes, which if heeded and taken on board, can help Guyana to emerge from its current problems and begin the process of fulfilling the promise which was clear at the dawn of Independence.

Accordingly, the PNCR has argued strongly for a society in which political and informational forces can be plural in nature and therefore function effectively in a developing democratic culture. It also believes that a free press is critical to the building of such a culture. The public record shows that the PNCR has done its utmost to ensure dialogue amongst the various political forces and has fought to make Parliament truly reflective of the will of the nation. Also, the Party is equally on record as recommending the implementation of the Symonds Report and the Disciplined Forces Commission Report, so that our security forces can meaningfully tackle crime and bring it under control. The Party has demanded too that the PPP/C take active measure to end the scourge of narco related activities in the country.

The PNCR is convinced that if the various political forces and stakeholders can reach national consensus on programmes to address various issues listed above, then there is no earthly reason why real development cannot take place in this country so that subsequent celebrations of Independence can occur without being overshadowed by such menacing and deep seated problems as a lack of political dialogue, economic stagnation and serious security problems, to name a few.

As we observe the 42nd anniversary of independence therefore the PNCR reiterates its position that the problems facing us are not insuperable and can be overcome by consensus, open political dialogue and an appropriate system of governance and that these can ensure real development and prosperity of Guyana.

People’s National Congress Reform
Congress Place, Sophia
Georgetown, Guyana.
Friday, May 23, 2008