We suffer from the lack of a national identity
Stabroek News
February 3, 2004

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Dear Editor,

I have watched, with great interest, the way the mind of the Guyanese populace operates. Guyanese are so quick to forget, we have a tendency to be loyal to our own (race) despite serious shortcomings that they may have, we see racism in everything that does not favour the race we belong to and many of us go around making unsubstantiated statements.

Now I wonder how this will ever change?

A few years ago I suggested that Guyana suffered from just three problems and today I will reiterate the point because nothing has changed.

1. Guyana suffers from the lack of a national identity or a sense of pride in our Guyanese citizenship. Guyanese should be Guyanese first and East Indian or African (to name just two) after. Will we ever see this happening?

2. We need to have adequate enforcement of laws. Let's make no mistake, we have laws but who enforces them.

There are some very small police constables, without guns or batons and no flashlight, who stop people on the road and then they talk for about 20 minutes and either get a 'raise' and let you go or they ask you to go to a police station to be charged. A day or two later you go there and speak to the SO and he said 'leave the bail money fo de boys' and he crosses your name out of the book--you are free!

3. The country needs proper management-- Pick any department and there will be found an abundance of 'seat-warmers.' Start with the University of Guyana and there you will find office staff who are determined to make students feel that they (the staff) are doing them favours by giving them records and other information relating to their studies and many are so rude it is unbelievable.

Pick a Government office and you will find that many employees start working at least half an hour later than they should and people are comfortable with that.

Are these traits that will help in the development of any country?

Yours faithfully,

Charrandass Persaud