Who wanted George Bacchus dead? Freddie on Friday
Kaieteur News
July 2, 2004

Related Links: Articles on 'wrong man' death
Letters Menu Archival Menu

If someone were to come out of another planet, and ask a Guyanese who most likely wanted George Bacchus dead, the answer would depend on who the visitor is speaking to. In research methodologies, the analyst has to be very cognizant of how much weight he/she puts on what the central actors tell them.

A good example is the just published autobiography of former American president, Bill Clinton. Not much is said about the Monica Lewinsky affair in the book and when an interviewer from the British Guardian newspaper used a certain angle in a question about the affair, Clinton refused to answer.

Lewinsky subsequently claimed that Clinton didnít tell it all in his book. Lewinsky too may be subjective in her criticism of Clinton

So the visitor has to be careful about whom he is directing the question to. An activist with the PNC would unhesitatingly be inclined to say that Bacchus was killed by the PPP Government. A political passion against the PPP would be the determinant in answering the question.

It is the other way around when the PPP cadre has to give our outer space visitor a response. He/she would say the PNC did it. The people of the country however are entitled to a dispassionate elaboration on the Bacchus murder. I hope this article here is a modest, however small, contribution to the debate. So who wanted Bacchus dead?

First, there are the associates of Bacchus who were around long before the Buxton madness emerged and the counterpoising birth of an extra-judicial squad. One of my nephews grew up with Bacchus in Lodge. George Bacchus was an unsavoury character. He was held by the police on three occasions for murdering different persons. He was charged for one of those killings.

Bacchus was also involved in gun-running conspiracies. During his lifetime, he chalked up an impressive list of enemies. When he came to my home to give me information on the Buxton conspiracy, I felt something was missing in what he was saying. My intuition told me that he was not a right person if you know what I mean.

He said that he came to me because I knew his cousin well, which I did, and told me I could trust him. But all that Bacchus told me was about opposition involvement in Buxton. Many of us in the media knew that anyway. He never made contact again.

The possibility exists that one of Bacchusís traditional enemies could have seized upon a good opportunity to kill him.

Secondly, there are his death squad colleagues. This group must be separated from the governmental officials who directed them. We will come to that theory in the final section of this essay. If Bacchus had fingered members of a death squad, which killed hardened criminals and some recalcitrant jailbirds, then obviously, their freedom depended on Bacchusís non-freedom.

The second possibility is that they may have infiltrated his security bulwark and finished him off independent of their official employers.

Thirdly, could there be a scenario as in the first theory I postulated above in which circumstances favoured the moment for someone. That someone may have had a serious family grudge that involved property disputes with Bacchus and that person(s) latched on to a golden moment that meant they could kill him with impunity?

In other words, did Bacchus die for personal reasons amounting to a mafia quarrel within the family and not at all for political reasons?

The fourth theory centres on the PNC. The Peopleís National Congress is one of historyís sad and exasperating stories. It is about unchanging human nature. Here is a party that, except for a period of four years (1989-1992), when Desmond Hoyte broke away from its internal metabolism, and ran Guyana without recourse to the PNCís cerebral biology Ė refuses to embrace the politics of multi-racial democracy.

But much more important is that this is a party that has committed atrocious third level human rights offences (first level would be fascist, second level would be bloody authoritarianism) against the people of this country. It refuses to apologize, boldly claimed that nothing like that happened and fights its way violently to get back into power, even resorting to a consort with Buxton-based criminals.

With the possible exception of people like Raphael Trotman, Peter Ramsaroop, George Norton among a tiny group, the PNC can hardly qualify for international acceptance as a credible party.

But whatever one wants to say about the PNC, it was certainly not in that partyís interest to kill Bacchus. The PNCís best try at removing the PPP from power since 1992 was the testimony of George Bacchus. Even if Bacchus has wilted under cross examination, the revelations would have led to directions that would have been nightmarish for the government of the PPP.

Bacchus was the goose that laid the golden egg for the PNC and they were very much overjoyed that he had provided them with a fantastic opportunity to knock the wind out of the PPPís sails. But his death proved how intellectually bankrupt and strategically immobilized has been the PNC since Burnhamís death.

Any party with that political trump card would have moved to protect its star witness. Bacchus should have been given living quarters inside Congress Place. Lacking Burnhamís phenomenal finesse, the PNC is going to keep on drifting from one ineptitude to another until power-sharing halts its diminishing credibility.

The fourth theory is that the PPP had more to gain than the PNC in wanting George Bacchus dead. You have to be a nasty, blundering propagandist to say that between the PPP and the PNC, the PNC had more to gain by killing Bacchus. Alright, the PNC could have killed him to start a conflagration and seize power. But how did the PNC figure that it would not have backfired on them? This is too illogical a theory to pursue.

The story of the PPP is one of the most tragic tales in the history of ancient, medieval and modern politics. How any group of politicians that has been so favoured by history can turn around and kick history in the teeth is something seldom seen in history. This is a party that has absolutely no respect for some of the most sacred values in revolutionary politics.

Obsessed with all the dimensions of power, driven by the need to dominate every square inch of Guyana, the PPP is destroying this country and taking itself with it. One could only hope that the Road to Damascus appears quickly. Had Bacchus lived, his testimony could have brought down the government because the evidence is there that Axel Williams and George Bacchus had an ongoing relation with the Home Affairs Minister. And who said that the Home Affairs Minister was his own boss?