Guyana Politics: APNU+AFC seeks to link US State Department official to PPP image makeover firm

 in Demerara Waves – December 9, 2019

Photo: Research Professor of Latin American Studies at the United States War College Strategic Studies Institute, Dr. Evan Ellis

The governing coalition of A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) Monday night slammed a United States (US) State Department Advisor on Latin America and Caribbean Affairs, Dr. Robert Ellis for predicting a “likely” People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPPC) victory at the next elections, by seeking to link him to a company that is helping to clean up that party’s image.

“We also wish to advise the Guyanese public that Mr. Ellis is a ‘known asset’ of a certain lobbying firm in Washington DC, USA. This firm has a known connections [sic] to the PPP. The Guyanese public is aware that this very firm is being paid tens of millions of dollars by the PPP and is tasked with whitewashing that party’s tainted and tattered image,” the coalition said.     

The APNU+AFC did not name the company with which it said Ellis, a former US Army War College Professor, is associated.

Slamming as “mischievous” the Demerara Waves Online News report in which Ellis stated that the US would have to hold a PPP administration to commitments to fight corruption and ensure transparency, the APNU+AFC said the 25-page report “cherry-picked” a few swords, and they were taken completely out of context.

The coalition charges that the article “smacks of desperation by the PPP and its agents.”

“Theirs is an attempt to dupe the Guyanese public into believing that the PPP stands any chance of returning to government. It also illustrates that the PPP is attempting to distract from their beleaguered presidential candidate, (edited) Irfan Ali, and their recent disastrous manifesto launch,” the coalition added.

APNU+AFC added that it is interesting to note as well that the so-called “expert” admitted that the PPP regime has a legacy of corruption, victimization, nepotism and narcotocracy.

“That is the PPP’s real and true image and that is in their DNA. The PPP is not to be trusted, it is not reformed and it is the same old cabal with the same kleptocracy agenda. No high-priced Washington lobbying firm with a bucket of whitewash can mask that from the Guyanese people who are very familiar with the unending list of development work being done by the APNU+AFC Coalition Government which has initiated a nationwide development overdrive,’ the coalition said.

“On the other hand, not only is the PPP trapped in its image of being obscenely and grotesquely corrupt but several of its leaders are either facing court trials or being investigated for criminal conduct,” the governing coalition said.

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United States disassociates itself from political scientist’s dated, private comments on Guyana

The United States on Tuesday disassociated itself from dated, private comments by American Political Science Professor Robert Evan Ellis who has forecast a likely victory for the opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) at the next general elections.

The diplomatic mission said Ellis’ comments “in no way reflect an official position” and he had written those “last April before his employment with the U.S. State Department”.

The American embassy said the US’ “only interest is in free, fair and peaceful elections on March 2, 2020.” “The outcome of the election is for the people of Guyana to decide,” the embassy added.

The comments by Professor Ellis are contained in his paper titled “Security Challenges in Guyana and the Government Response” in Journal of the Americas, a US Air Force publication.

The American embassy says it regrets any inconvenience caused by Ellis “dated comments.”

The governing A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change coalition has flayed Professor Ellis for predicting that the opposition People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPPC) is likely to be victorious at the next elections.

The coalition says Professor Ellis is a ‘known asset’ of a certain lobbying firm in the United States that has been paid tens of millions of dollars by the PPP to whitewash its tainted and tattered image.

Ellis says “with the likely return of the PPP to power”, that party was expected to use some of its oil revenues to hire Chinese companies to construct major infrastructural projects. He went on to say in his paper that the US should ensure that a PPP administration sticks to promises to address corruption and ensure transparency. “At the same time, given concerns regarding corruption in prior PPP administrations, while the US should embrace and work in good faith with a future PPP government, it must do so with its eyes open, holding the PPP to account with respect to its commitments to transparency, democracy, and commitment to free market and the rule of law”.

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