RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF MEMBERSHIP


Belonging to an organisation carries rights and responsibilities. It brings benefits but imposes duties. A person would normally form a desire to join an organisation for a variety of reasons in the expectation that certain rights or benefits will accrue. The person will no doubt then examine the rules of the organisation to determine whether he/she is prepared to be bound by them. If so, the person may decide to join. I chose to be a part of the PPP and to abide by its rule against public criticism.
Very often members of organisations develop differences with other members or with the executive body. When these differences are on a fundamental principle, then the member is expected to resign. However, once members have a common purpose and are dedicated to the achievement of that purpose, differences are usually resolved. This sometimes happen when the members whose views are not supported accept the decision and continue to work for the common purpose. All leaders of the PPP, like other organisations, do not always agree with all of its decisions. After debate, the minority invariably chooses to accept the majority view and work together for their implementation.

 
The PPP and its government stand for many things. These include the elimination of corruption, transparency and an end to discrimination. Many measures have been implemented to deal with these problems. I and both the PPP and the government have pointed out repeatedly the measures which have been taken. Nevertheless these remain matters of concern to many people. I have written articles urging that additional measures be taken to eliminate or reduce the subsistence of these problems so that the continuing concerns of citizens will be addressed.
One thing I cannot do unless I am prepared to resign from the PPP, is to publicly condemn it. Firstly, these alleged issues listed above have a genesis which is not rooted in >wickedness.= Increased corruption has arisen from increased public spending. Infrastructure spending in 1992 was $2 billion. Today it is more than $20 billion and increasing. This is the root cause and the institutional mechanisms have not kept pace with the increased spending. Similar circumstances apply to the other issues.
These matters are often discussed in the leadership of the PPP. These discussions could be vigorous and disputatious. Assuming without admitting that my views that more measures should be adopted immediately are rejected, I then have to decide whether I should resign and go public. In contemplating what I should do I have to understand that I will be leaving an organisation to which I have belonged for three-quarters of my life, that still upholds the ideals I believe in and that my lone voice outside may be far less effective as compared to my voice inside. 
Let me make plain that the PPP remains the only party equipped to deal with and resolve the problems which exist in Guyana including those which are referred to above. These were referred to by Emile Mervin on July 6, when he criticised me for not speaking out: 
 
AMr Ralph Ramkarran reportedly said if he is the PPP=s candidate, he will continue the PPP=s Apositive qualities,@ but he never listed examples of those Apositive qualities.@ He also reportedly said if he is elected President that Athe country can be assured that corruption will be tackled from day one, that transparency will be implemented, [and] that we will work as hard as we can to bring unity. Y The only problem here is that the PPP government has problems with systemic corruption, lacks transparency, and engages in discrimination which affects racial unity, but as Speaker of the House, he never did or said anything to address these very problems he implicitly acknowledged exist. Why should anyone believe him now? @
I trust that I have explained above the context in which the problems I mentioned in the radio interview arose and persist. It is not my fault that Mr. Mervin has not read my articles that I referred to above. It is Mr. Mervin=s.  As a regular commentator Mr. Mervin ought to make more effort to be accurate when he decides to make accusations. I refer him to my blog which contains my past articles, the address of which is set out below.
I trust also that I have explained to Mr. Mervin that if I decide to criticise my Party publicly, I must be prepared to resign. I do not believe that the interests of the people of Guyana will be served by my resignation from the PPP. The concerns and views that I have are raised in the PPP and considered. I have not found any justifiable reason why I should go public and resign on any matter.
 
I talked about benefits of belonging to an organisation at the beginning of this article. I have derived enormous satisfaction by being given an opportunity of making a contribution, albeit modest and hardly worthy of a footnote,  to the freedom of my country from authoritarian rule, for free and fair elections, for constitutional reform and for the building of parliamentary democracy.  And if the PPP can deliver on these, then it will deliver on all the concerns of Mr. Mervin and will do so. It is with that confidence that I have remained as part of the PPP and have abided by its rules. (www.conversationtree.gy)

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