OPINION: National potential with less talking and more delivering – By GHK Lall

— no harrowing road accidents or domestic deaths

Kaieteur News – I am encouraged as I read of the many expectations of my fellow Guyanese for 2021. Because the editorials, letter columns, even a newspaper article or two, all had much to say about the many things that happened last year – a very troubling one, at times – there is little that I want to add to the cascade.

Since it was a demanding 2020 for me, the less shared about that ill-fated year, the better I can look ahead. The New Year has all the potential to be a different kind of year, one never seen or experienced here before.     

I am thrilled by the national potential, which can start a new journey and make whatever lies ahead prospering and pleasing for all Guyanese. But, only if handled right by those at the helm, who must deliver on their responsibilities, to the peoples of this nation. The key is that it must be all the peoples. If I sound overly guarded, then that’s on the money, for I am. But already I am detecting signs that disturb, which involves our leaders, both on the government’s side and that of the opposition’s.

Let there be no mistake: all the right tones, right words, and right postures are on display. The top people on both sides of the usually rancid political divide, not noted for being gifted speakers or writers, are bending over backwards to not offend. To not offend the Americans. To not offend Exxon. To not offend one another in what I call skillfully choreographed verbal dances. Incidentally, if Guyanese political leaders have to make a hard choice between agitations, the varied foreigners from the north versus disappointing locals yet again, then that one is a no brainer, and will be done. Let the chips fall. And some chips have already begun to do.

We are full of chatter about transparency, but fail to deliver on sensitive things. Like mining contracts documents. Like what is in the Payara review report. Like that there be clear and solid movement (Argentine experts) relative to how far they may be able to go beneath the grisly killings in Cotton Tree, and what could be embedded in a much-anticipated report. That is, if a bona fide investigation ever gets off the ground and to a full conclusion. I was encouraged to hear a while back during the post murder throes and frenzies that it would happen.

Now I have some doubts, as to how meaningful it would be, and whether we set the stage for more cross narratives, political legends, and the whole kit and kaboodle that keeps us divided and at each other’s throats. If we (our leaders) keep talking and then balk at sharing information with the Guyanese public, we might as well occupy mouths and minds on those matters that we can actually present something that is comprehensive and honest. One more thing that I was encouraged about came from a gathering of leading Guyanese political presences, a statement attributed to the President and Leader of the Opposition.

It was of the need for all to be involved in Guyana’s development. That is a restatement of the obvious, for if all are not, then we set ourselves for more of the endless squabbling and more failures. To the two gentlemen I say this: do something. Stop talking. We have had enough of that to last many generations to come.

Now, I move over to the more routine in Guyanese life. I opened the newspapers hesitantly on New Year’s morning and breathed a sigh of relief. Unless I missed it, there was not a single incident of our usual shocking domestic violence nor was there any traffic accident, especially those fuelled by alcohol, which unleashes speeding. There was no paper on January 2, so I trust that there would be no unpleasant surprises in either area, on Sunday morning.

Last, I extend wishes to all citizens in hoping that 2021 will be a far better year. Compared to 2020, how can it not be?

(The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Kaieteur News)

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