A day after Pime Minister Mia Mottley the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) chairman, returned from her mission to Georgetown to try to resolve the political impasse there, a small group of Guyanese residents gathered outside the Guyana Consulate in Brittons Cross Road for a peaceful protest.
Leading the action, attorney-at-law Lalu Hanuman, who has been living here for13 years, told Barbados TODAY he was still very much interested in what was happening in his homeland.
He said it was for that reason that he and several other Guyanese nationals and members of the Caribbean Movement for Peace and Integration, were gathered to “protest what is happening in Guyana”.
He said following the March 2 general election, it was unfortunate that the country is still waiting for the election’s outcome.
Hanuman said: “The Guyanese consulate is the representative of the Guyana government in Barbados, so we are calling on the Guyana Consulate, and indeed the Guyana government to do the right thing and be democratic.
“Whether or not you support the results of an election democracy is about whoever wins gets into office.
“We are calling for transparent and credible elections in Guyana.”
The results of the regional and general elections are disputed, with the populous Region 4’s votes being at the centre of the quarrel between the island’s main parties and ethnic groups
On Wednesday, Acting Chief Justice Roxane George-Wiltshire ruled that the declaration made by the returning office in Region 4 was unlawful and in breach of the Representation of the People Act.
Since the elections there have been reports of some violence.
Prime Minister Mottley, at the helm of a quintet of CARICOM leaders went to the South American member state to appeal to the leaders of the political parties at the root of the fracas for a peaceful resolution.
Hanuman told Barbados TODAY he was “very pleased” that Mottley has done this.
He said: “The governing party seems obsessed with power and as such they are holding on to power and in effect having elections rigged.
“They are trying to manipulate the tabulation. The international community and CARICOM have been calling for a transparent process and so far they have not succeeded in getting that.”
Insisting that he was not a supporter of any of the political parties in Guyana, Hanuman said he was simply hoping his approximately two-hour peaceful protest would send a signal that the Guyanese diaspora was interested in there being a fair and transparent process.
The small group gathered on an open lot in front of a mechanic’s shop just across the street from the Guyana Consulate with a Guyanese flag and some placards in hand.
Describing his fellow Guyanese as “pawns in a bigger game”, he accused “colonialists” of “milking the cow” while the Guyanese fight over the proverbial cow.
As for the Guyanese population in Barbados, Hanuman said: “Unfortunately, just like in Guyana, there is a racial division and so the people who support the government are making all kinds of excuses to justify the government staying in power, whereas the people who support the opposition are obviously taking a different position.”
Hanuman said he was concerned that Guyana’s oil wealth could be “frittered away with al the silliness that is going on there right now”.
Holding a picture of the murdered political activist and Pan-Africanist Walter Rodney, Hanuman said perhaps he was “the only political individual with integrity and principle in Guyana”.
He declared: “There needs to be a new grouping. It is a pity that there are no more Walter Rodneys in Guyana. Ideally I would love for there to be a Walter Rodney, but unfortunately there isn’t.” He said he believed Guyana could received sanctions if the situation was not resolved soon and this could lead to suffering. [email protected]
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