Race, party and politics in Guyana - an overview

To the Editor
Guyana Chronicle
September 5, 2001

WHEN George Orwell wrote his classic, "Animal Farm," he must have been thinking about hostile and corrupt states like Guyana where domination of one race over the other has such tremendous influence and impact. In Animal Farm, the pigs, the smart guys, used all conceivable methods to preserve their authority and domination over the other animals.

Guyana today is reduced to one big Animal Farm where the two major races, the Indians and Africans, are using all the skills practised by the pigs to establish and maintain control and power over the other, while the other four races, or what is left, are hopelessly consumed by this racial hate and antagonism.

This constant struggle for power and domination explains the crude and complex nature of politics in Guyana, of race consciousness and party allegiance above loyality to country. The reflection of this fact is observed in the occupation of the two major races. The Africans make up the majority in the Army, the Police, the Judiciary and the Public Service, while the Indians have the stronghold on the economy. Both races guard their territories just as savagely as a lion in the jungle. The characters of the two races also explain why the present government is so uncertain to act firmly, especially in matters of law and order. The PPP/C winning the last election with the Indian support is afraid to take action, while the elements of the opposition are bent on destroying the Indians and their wealth.

The Indians are generally peaceful and hardworking with no ambition to dominate any other race, but by the same token will resist attempts to be dominated. The Africans, on the other hand, like to dominate not forgetting their carefree lifestyle reflects their poor financial status in society. It is no surprise that while the Government is demonstrating its sincere intention towards development, the PNC is taking retrograde steps by creating a tense climate.

The PPP/C will continue to win any free and fair election with the Indian support. The PNC, knowing, this has resorted to various forms of intimidation, hoping the Indians will leave and finally find themselves in the minority, setting the stage for a PNC victory. The Government's inability to deal firmly with the situation will result in their own defeat!