OPINION: The underbelly of Guyana – Editorial in Kaieteur News

 The made-up face of Guyana sparkles, but the sheen only goes so far beneath the surface. It is the well-tended face that is presented to the world with overwhelming power, to be seen, regardless of interest, agreement, or healthy skepticism. But there is another side to Guyana, which is less of quantity and its gloss, one that goes deep and to many dark places.

Today, we speak of that other side of Guyana beneath the smiling face, and the sweet words that flow, especially from political leaders.   

It is the underbelly of Guyana, of which no one speaks these days, not many have so much as passing interest in, given the rush of discoveries, the pace of cascading events. The underbelly of Guyana is long and, living up to its name and situation in the nation’s anatomy: it is out of sight, mostly. That is, until we at this newspaper place it in the public domain, where all can see, and make their own judgment calls, take positions for themselves.

We have presented the regrettable developments via numerous news articles of crime that run many Guyanese underground, making virtual prisoners of them. This includes the rich in their camera-equipped, dog-guarded, high steel-fenced and, sometimes, armed manned security presence. Sometimes, with tens of thousands of licenced firearm holders, there are guns in the family home, yet even that legal presence does not bring the serenity of sturdy confidence. It is difficult for a society to exist to its fullest potential, while marshaling and utilising the fullness of its assets, to get where its citizens, individually and collectively, envision that they can go.

But of this we do not speak here, where the preference is for the smooth messages of public relations professionals conveying to fearful citizens that there is nothing to worry about, that things are under control, statistically much better. The Americans having a scornful saying: go tell that to the Marines. It is because U.S. marines are the ones who have to face the fire, with their bodies and spirit. So, too, it is with Guyanese going about the demands of their day, while navigating what has become the dark underbelly of a national criminal zone. This should not be, and of this we should be speaking more and all the while truthfully and openly.

In a similar manner, this country’s oil finds sparkle in the abundance of quantity and dollars dreamed about, and that could come, but only if managed right at the political leadership level. The long underbelly of political leadership is slimy, and does not speak of any quality where integrity in the handling of this oil is concerned. Too many material matters are withheld, with too much crawling around by leaders, like snakes in the grass and night, with the kind of quality disclosures that are timely, and clearly inform the nation that the best is being done with the nation’s oil wealth, and on the most principled basis. It has not been so, not even by margins that could be tolerated, but only of one sneaky leadership trick following the other. Leadership secrecies stand as the most damaging, the more monstrous, crimes being committed upon the hopeful, dependent citizens of this country.

Guyanese are bombarded with loud noises about money being spent in the many billions, yet there are those who are abandoned, because of circumstances, or the heartlessness of our times. As leaders manifest their callous disregard for citizens, the same is being played out, to a discomforting degree, by family members abandoning their elderly, and mothers abandoning their newborn, at the staggering rate of one a month, at the Georgetown Public Hospital. Meanwhile, our youths are captivated and, soon enough, controlled by the lures of the fast crowd and fast money, which sets them riding around on bicycles and motorcycles to rob commuters at will; and in cars to terrorise villages and homes, with similar freedom.

Rome wasn’t built in a day. But leader after leader have wasted the moments to make real meaningful differences in every walk of Guyanese life, and particularly where such counts, with those who need it the most. This is the long, concealed underbelly of Guyana, and it festers.

SOURCE: Aug 08, 2021  Editorial – Kaieteur News

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  • greyprayerpower  On 08/09/2021 at 2:20 am

    The truth will be revealed, those who only think of  filling their pockets and store up for their corrupt generation, will never find true  happiness. Deep in their soul, where the Holy God resides, let them search their conscience, being less selfish, and attend to the dire needs of the poor and destitute, will ensure peace and the grace of God that cannot be had in selfish and greedy ways. Time to give their heads a giant shake to knock out all the hunger for material wealth and wretchedness that consume their lives. Beware, time is running out. Kamala Gupta

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