We can't expect Britain and the Netherlands to solve our border problems
Stabroek News
April 19, 2002

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Dear Editor,

I refer to your editorial captioned "Guyana, Suriname, Britain and the Netherlands". I cannot believe that it has come to this; the leading newspaper openly advocating the abject return to reliance on our erstwhile masters to solve our ongoing national and international problems (crises), 40 odd years after we supposedly cast off the shackles.

While making the appeal to the "powers that were" on the Suriname/Guyana issue, why not ask them at the same time to lend a hand on a couple of other pressing (or is the right word chronic) national issues; like the Amerindian Land Rights issue, or the need for a constitution and system of governance that reflects our unique ethnic and political reality?

More to the topic, how about humbly begging Whitehall to define and find solutions to the fact that since Independence we have been constantly accosted by close neighbours with hostile intentions, neighbours whom if they have not already done so, will one day learn to operate in concert to tackle the "Guyana Problem"; yet we ourselves have done nothing, absolutely nothing, to identify and cultivate powerful regional friends to act as protectors when such a crunch time comes!

You complain glibly about the legal, technical and archival insufficiencies of the local politicians, but the advice and assistance of Ramphal, Jackson, Shahabbuddeen, and any number of Guyanese PhD's in International Studies is readily available! So too are our own, the British and, I suspect, the Dutch records on this issue.

Time and time again we are informed by those who govern and those who analyze the governors, that important decisions on Statehood cannot be completed because of "technical difficulties"; but Mr. Editor, are technocrats the ones who are mandated to run the State? Where, in all this dithering and prevarication, is there mention of the obligations of Statesmanship?

May I suggest, Mr. Editor, that rather than look to the outside for help from people who couldn't care less about the affairs of this "stagnant backwater", we examine and demand of ourselves good governance, under clear mandates and consultation with the people, and most importantly the will and vision to rise above present circumstances and craft for our nation a brighter future.

Yours faithfully,

Max Hinds