THE PPP HAS LOST ITS WAY


The selection of Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo by the Central Committee of the PPP as its nominee for Opposition Leader seals that party’s fate in opposition for decades to come, unless the APNU+AFC coalition underperforms or unravels. The PPP has been shattered by defeat, its leadership disgraced by corruption and it has lost the sympathy of the international community through abuse, corruption and the refusal to hold local government elections.

With no intention by the ruling clique of giving up power, the return of its younger MPs and a sprinkling of new faces to Parliament, would be mere window dressing. This new generation of leaders stands no chance of influencing policy to rebuild the PPP or unite the country. The recently expressed views by Dr. Vindhi Persaud as to the way forward for the PPP in her recently published email and its rejection symbolise the impotence that this group will face.

Dr. Jagdeo’s name emerged initially from among the ruling clique in the Executive Committee. In the contest between Dr. Jagdeo and Mr. Ramotar at the Central Committee, Donald Ramotar received only 9 votes of 35 voting members. It must have been a hugely embarrassing. Being fought down by Dr. Jagdeo, his mentor, at whose instance, and not through popular sentiment, he became the presidential candidate in 2011, would have been a bitter pill to swallow, especially since he is the immediate past president. [Correction: since publication I have clarified that Mr. Donald Ramotar’s support amounted to about nine persons, if so many, but no vote actually took place. The support for Dr. Jagdeo was so overwhelming that the election was by acclamation.]

Worse was the virtual abandonment of him by the Central Committee of which he was general secretary for 15 years. Mr. Ramotar ignored the fact that Dr. Jagdeo’s insatiable ego cannot be satisfied by fraternal considerations or rational calculations. In any event, Mr. Ramotar apparently did not realize that with the loss of two elections and Dr. Jagdeo’s grip on the leadership, his political career was over.

Mr. Ramotar long ago ceded authority to Dr. Jagdeo. He therefore has no one but himself to blame for his loss of influence in the Central Committee. Mr. Ramotar may accept the humiliation of rejection and soldier on with diminished influence, likely without a Parliamentary seat, as he would have to bear the embarrassment of an immediate past president sitting at third place behind Dr. Jagdeo and Mr. Rohee. He would justify continued low-level activism by deluding himself that he is maintaining party unity. This has always been the answer to his failure to respond to Dr. Jagdeo’s most egregious behavior. This silent approbation allowed serious schisms to arise within the Party, which remained unaddressed. The worst was the resignations of Ramjattan and Nagamootoo that led directly to the PPP’s loss of power. This damage to the PPP, Mr. Ramotar’s ill-fated decision to seek the candidacy for president in 2011, despite Dr. Jagdeo’s support and the ruling clique’s rejection of a national unity government, have together brought the PPP to its knees.

In his early fifties, Dr. Jagdeo will retain his hold on the leadership for at least the next 20 years, while still trying to secure a third term. He never intended to stand aside despite his promises. It means that an entire generation of younger leaders will have no chance of aspiring to leadership or influencing the party’s direction. Since the spoils of office are no longer available to be granted or taken away, there would be a limit to the success of his methods of leadership. In any event his continued grip on power and greed for the limelight will smother younger leaders and denude the PPP of talent, leaving it with sycophants and as an ineffective opposition force. Eventually, he will again choose the next leader.

By electing Dr. Jagdeo, the Central Committee seems prepared to abide by his methods of abuse, control and sycophancy. He sees himself as the most gifted and charismatic intellect and strategist who will save the PPP and Guyana. His and the leadership’s vision is of a ceaseless ‘struggle’ against the ‘PNC’ and ‘rigged elections’ and no compromise with the ‘de facto government.’ Primary to the strategy will be a defence of his record – what he would pompously refer to as his legacy. He will also try to convince supporters that they were robbed thereby perpetuating a sense of victimhood. This will ensure the persistence of the national ethnic contest. Exploited so effectively in the campaign, the PPP no doubt now sees as the strategy of choice.

The PPP has made, arguably, the most egregious blunder in its entire history by failing to implement Cheddi Jagan’s ‘shared governance’ or ‘winner does not take all’ policies in political conditions in 2011 where it could have been easily sold to its supporters. The PPP would have had to make fundamental concessions and share power in circumstances of equality where it would not ‘dominate or be dominated’ – a policy also advocated by Jagan. The national unity thereby created would have transformed Guyana and revolutionized our politics. Our nation would once again have been able to aspire to 1950 and bring within reach our motto of ‘One People, One Nation, One Destiny.’ But President Ramotar had made it plain in 2011 that power sharing ‘would not happen.’ The ruling clique of the PPP has deliberately killed the dream of unity and is on its way to Parliament to bury it.

11 thoughts on “THE PPP HAS LOST ITS WAY

  1. Comrade if your predictions are correct then Guyana will return to the “dark ages”…… missing boat train and plane………am sure that is not what
    the next generations of Guyanese wish for.
    Jagdeo and his political cabal will never return to
    power….at least not democratically.
    If anything the only changes that will emerge
    is changes in the newly elected leadership.
    My prediction is a stronger government under
    present leadership or changes in that leadership.

    Party politics is on its way out nationally and internationally as the voters are fed up with the same faces and repeated failures by the political classes……disappointed in their ,” indecisiveness”
    and “mistakes” in implementing their policies.

    Voters will judge the newly elected government
    by their actions not their “bull****” ing.

    Let’s be fair and judge them by their ability to implement the changes promised as soon as possible……

    Hopefully with good opposition.
    Would not wish for the demise of the PPP
    but as you suggested many changes in their
    leadership…..sooner the better. Jagdeo and Ramotar has been a disappoint to their supporters
    so it is for new leadership to emerge from within
    the party…..they will be replaced am sure
    how quickly the question.?
    Am optimistic for Guyana’s future generations to
    demand better governance…..status quo in politics history.

    Respectfully
    Kamtan

  2. An interesting piece by a former PPP insider. This quote from the column on Jagdeo being the “de jure” leader of the PPP is very troubling: “This will ensure the persistence of the national ethnic contest.” It is sad that someone who wants to be known as Champion of the Earth is building his legacy on fanning ethnic hatred. However his card has been seen and the Coalition needs to make his job very difficult by governing Guyana inclusively and avoiding the trap of using state power for personal and crony enrichment. Guyana avoiding this will get a big assist from rapid reform of the information landscape in the country to ensure robust sharing of news and views. The information revolution Guyana needs requires most urgently a strong regulatory regime, not government ownership of the media. The live streaming of parliamentary sessions is a great start. It should also be on Guyana TV and players in the media landscape in Guyana need to help pay for that service to be provided to Guyanese. The burden should not be all on the government. Another important aspect of keeping Jagdeo from leading Guyana backwards is the outcome of the racial incitement charge he is facing which can complicate his participation in Parliament.

  3. A well put together piece by a well learned politician and elder statesman,even tho most of guyana dont have the know how or the where with all to make their views known or their voices heard,the onus is on guys like my brother here and the lincolns and witters and kissoons and all others who have the interest of GUYANA at heart to continue to educate people while speaking up on our behalf,we are eternally grateful and will continue to follow your leads,we will also continue to use your guides in our decision making. continue the good work we are here with you. ONE LOVE FOR A UNITED GUYANA.

  4. Interesting analysis indeed. I do concur that: “he would have to bear the embarrassment of an immediate past president sitting at third place behind Dr. Jagdeo and Mr. Rohee”.

  5. The way the central executive committee voted 24 to 9 in favour of Jagdeo only show how much control this man had before the may 11 demise of the PPP.

  6. As far as I know Jagdeo is not a doctor. Why is he being referred to as one? That’s an honorary title he has. Here’s Wikipedia-
    “With regard to the use of this honorific, the policies of institutions of higher education generally ask that recipients “refrain from adopting the misleading title”[5] and that a recipient of an honorary doctorate’s use of the title “Dr” before their name should be restricted to engagement with the institution of higher education in question and not within the broader community”.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honorary_degree

  7. Pingback: THE PPP HAS LOST ITS WAY – by Ralph Ramkarran | Guyanese Online

  8. Dear Mr Ramkarran,

    My letter on Mr Braithwaite was expunged from you website for reasons which you do not have to justiify.

    Check the record pleae. I supported your candndacy to become the PPP Presidential candidate. That support was not withdrawn evr since.
    .
    No criticisms came from me about you in the press.

    Are you still a contender for future leadership?

    No leaders wiil champion all tht may be in his supporters interests. the Jagans who we all iidolise were famous to preach race harmony and live and let live.

    Currebntly the Stabroek News and Kaieteur News do not print my lletters. But they allow Kissoon, Hinds, Braithwaite, Ram and others to do so with abandon.

    Could you intervene on my behalf to reopen consideration for my letters to be published in first the Stabroek and later the Kaieteur News.?

    Seeking your help in the interest of democracy, debarte and pres freedom which can hurt no one.

    My email is sultan.mohamed@aol.com

    Hope you may communicate your decision.
    attached is a new letter sent for you perusal and possible forwarding to your publishers

    Even if one wants to criticise the PPP. its not possible to do so when only one pro PPP paper is all you have.

    Regards,

    Sultan Mohamed
    Ps Please see attached

    PNC COALITION BESIEGED ON MANY FRONTS COULD DESTROY ECONOMY

    Dear Editor,

    Kindly consider my letter for publication.
    Respectfully,

    Sultan Mohamed
    On PNC led coalition’s Finance Minister Mr Winston Jordan presenting their delayed 2015 budget it will run into the formidable brick wall of PPP economic doyen and likely Opposition Leader, Dr Bharat Jagdeo. Quoting from the UK Guardian about that country’s budget, the PNC’s coalition will also be engaging in ” unmitigated chest-thumping, and testosterone-packed swinging from branch to branch of the political forest”.
    Will it make a difference with the PNC coalition lost in economic uncertainty, increasing crime, a truculent domestic opposition and cross border Venezuelan assertiveness? They are besieged on many fronts. All these problems are now overwhelming the PNC coalition with its bloated cabinet totally inexperienced and unsure what to do. But the PNC led coalition has no ideology, no economic programmes, no economic agenda, no long term economic development plans. It lives day to day and has always survived by piggybacking on the PPP’s economic flight path trajectory. Finance Minister Jordan was a civil servant functionary under the PPP government. He is familiar with the PPP budget preparation by osmosis but without any known ideological genesis of its creation. Mr Granger and the entire lot are lost causes where economics and governance are concerned. It does not augur well for Guyana.
    They have already proven they cannot effectively stop the crime problem like they promised. Very soon the talking drums will again beat for a national unity government all anew. With the economy now in a stall it may plummet, at anytime. Guyanese are likely to get more creole mechcheh mechcheh in parliament, soon. While it rebrands and charts its future, the PPP should meantime install a three man lookout skeleton crew into parliament with Mr Clement Rohee, Ms Gail Teixeira and Mr Anil Nandalall holding the fort. With Mr Rohee as the temporary Opposition Leader, he will be sitting directly across the parliamentary divide as a poignant reminder to the absconding Mr Moses Nagamotooo reminding him what principled working class loyalty can achieve without blind runaway ambition. In effect , Mr Rohee, no pushover, will be the man President Granger must deal with in all required Opposition constitutional consultations, not Mr Nagamootoo.
    The PPP must also urgently ensure former President Donald Ramotar also returns to parliament and be entrusted as Deputy Opposition Leader, like Mr Boysie Ramkarran, for effective top level balance. An exceedingly valuable asset, Mr Ramotar’s non confrontational window must be included to offer an opening for engagement and compromises. When both, he and Dr Jagdeo, eventually comes back with all and sundry, from banbass (exile) , Diwali 2015 lights will shine like never before. The interim will afford the PPP’s Mr Rohee some temporary Opposition Leader acknowledgement for his pains and sacrifices. Such a temporary appointment will serve to humble the conjoined political adversaries and put them in their places. Battle scarred by their no confidence motion against him Mr Rohee often wears their loathing with pride and dignity similar to that dished out to the Jagans who fervently idolised his future promise. So far they have been right about him.
    If Dr Jagdeo is more feared, let them meantime deal with the PPP’s formidable and popular working class General Secretary if they also find him, ironically, more racially prejudiced considering his Obama-like mixed race heritage. Sure there is PNC coalition uneasiness, now that all are fully aware that “The PNC coalition seems to have no answer to Jagdeo” as the Afrocentric Dr David Hinds wrote with special SN privileges on 22-4-2015, in public lamentation. What is their comparable answer to the battle hardened Mr Rohee from among their barren ranks who they always seek to crush? Nothing.
    In the Buxton militant’s SN letter, he grudgingly wrote: “Mr. Jagdeo embodies the new PPP in every way. But most importantly he embodies a street-smart PPP that is prepared to fearlessly slug it out. Anyone who is faintly familiar with Guyana’s political history would understand why Jagdeo and the Jagdeo way is at the core of the PPP strategy. Jagdeo’s presence on the PPP’s platform is no accident. Jagdeo touches a nerve. He resonates with the PPP’s target audience. He skillfully exploits the fears (like none ever exists) of the PPP’s traditional supporters while attempting to drive fear and uncertainty into the minds of the alliance supporters and potential supporters.”
    Did President Jagdeo succeed beyond everyone’s -friend and foe’s – expectations , to awaken hitherto unknown shock, fear and awe, causing Dr Hinds and company to go without sleep because it is most true, of the former President frying many, not just one panicky nerve center of the PNC led coalition? Seems he has. Seems there’s more in the PPP’s reservoir which is astoundingly only backed up by unequalled and superior economic performance under the PPP’s watch. It’s most difficult to demolish or impugn PPP economic successes when it leaps out to remind you of its presence even in its citadel silence.
    Eternally analysing politics through his Afrocentric race lens it is obvious why Dr Hinds and company harbours deep entrenched antipathy towards the PPP and their supporters. Why they paint and muddy the PPP and Dr Jagdeo is because they have entitlement viewed Guyana unopposed since the PPP was born but yet that party’s multi ethnic successes are indisputable. But no more, can,or will that confounded race entitlement nonsense endure when ethnic and racial security is a prerequisite for preferred nationhood , not one miscegenated nation of perpetual evil design and PNC nirvana objective.
    If all is to be made right in Guyana it must be by mutual Federation agreement and not by force, violence or unacceptable uncivilized methods The current monolithic empowered facade may be poised or prepared to storm the resurgent PPP just because they do not know, or learned at anytime, how to deal peacefully with their adversaries. But would they still persevere or succeed? Knowing PNC history they will soon be rushing to get PPP “critical support” and sustenance. How that is handled will either make or break the PPP depending on the tradeoffs.
    The PNC Midas Touch brand which will overwhelm Guyana with economic chaos visiting everyone was Dr Walter Rodney’s famous observation which has never been cured. In a country with its usual and well known deliberate PNC destructiveness and bankruptcy, that which only invites repeating PNC hunger will momentarily defang race rivalries of its poison when all are equally faced with the inevitable PNC coalition’s inspired trademark starvation. That’s the PNC legacy which is most threatening and to be feared because its the naked truth which none can deny. Any destruction by which they then plot and threaten the PPP will also certainly boomerang to theirs, most assuredly.

    Sultan Mohamed

  9. The PPP is bitterly divided and fragmented, and increasingly – a weak party.

    With the PPP’s significant lack of competent and credible leadership, now, in desperation like a drowning man, it is ‘grasping at straws’.

    Ironically, Jagdeo is the bitter seed of division implanted by the Jagans before their deaths.

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