Death squads are never a solution
Stabroek News
February 4, 2004

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Dear Editor,

In any democratic country the Minister of Home Affairs, the police chief, the chairman of the defence board and the head of the Presidential Secretariat would have been sent home.

Development is hinged on good and transparent governance, respect for the constitution, submission of all citizens to the laws of the country and the right to live, earn and congregate freely as dictated by law.

The use of death squads as in Latin America during the late 70s and during the 80s saw the fall of governments, the demonisation of societies and huge losses of property and life. One could well understand the frustrations of any government after making numerous attempts to bring stability to a country but stability in any society cannot become reality by treating the symptoms. The decay, destruction, alleged phantoms and general destruction of this nation are all part of a corrupt system of governance inclusive of nepotism, violence, race politics and a government devoid of the principles of nation building in a multiracial setting.

Death squads in Latin and Central America have not solved political or economic problems. What has emerged in these countries was national instability which in some cases led to the toppling of government by force. The resort to death squads at a governmental level sets the tone for national instability.

Where do we go from here? There are just two plausible things the Jagdeo government can do as the Caribbean, donors and the rest of the world look on.

1. Continue along the same PPP denial administrative style and face the music.

2. Embrace democratic governance. Esta-blish an independent commission, offer immunity to some and truly expose this crime.

When an aide of Nixon broke into the headquarters of his opponents, because Nixon had knowledge of the fact as head of the country, he had to go. This is how a democracy works.

Yours faithfully,

Ganesh Persaud