‘All of Guyana should be upset’ – Pres. Ali rallies collective condemnation for Opposition’s ‘racist, divisive’ statements


President Dr. Irfaan Ali on Saturday sought to rally collective condemnation for the political Opposition’s urgings for citizens, particularly those members of the arms forces, to engage in public disorder in rejection of his democratically elected government.

The President made specific reference to a meeting held at Buxton, East Coast Demerara recently where Opposition Leader, Aubrey Norton shared the platform with several members of the Working People’s Alliance (WPA).

The WPA member, Tacuma Ogunseye, has come under fire for his “racist and divisive” statements but Dr. Ali believes the comments should be more widely condemned and said there are religious leaders and members of civil society who have chosen to ignore it.

Ogunseye, during the public meeting earlier this week, sought to suggest that Afro-Guyanese were being oppressed by the incumbent People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) government and that they should resist, particularly since the Guyana Police Force and the Guyana Defence Force are dominated by Afro-Guyanese.

Already, Chief-of-Staff and Chairman of the Defence Board, Brigadier Godfrey Bess, and Attorney General, Anil Nandlall have issued statements condemning the attempt to incite racial tensions and public disorder.

“To the religious community, in the consciousness of religion and in your own conscience as religious leaders, do you accept this? To members of civil society who would ignore this because it does not fit your agenda too, where are your voices now? What do you have to say about this?” Dr. Ali quizzed in an address to the nation streamed live on his Facebook page.

He said the Opposition has proven to be a “pack of jokers. Deceptive haters and racist divisive propagandists.”

“This is clear hate, terrorism and racism that came off of that stage. All of Guyana should be upset,” President Ali said.

Speaking directly to the people of Buxton, the Head of State urged residents to reject the Opposition’s intention to use them as pawns and hold them to ransom, as he reflected on events of the past.

“Every time the PPP is in government, we have to deal with these types of utterances.”

The President aired a clip from the meeting where Ogunseye said, “I don’t understand how people complain they are oppressed and they have all the guns in their hands, they are the majority in the army and the majority in the police and they are still saying they are oppressed. What you are saying is that the problem is of our own making. Anytime we turn those guns in the right direction it is over.”

In response, the President said, “What did he [Ogunseye] mean by ‘anytime we turn those guns in the right direction it is over’?”

“Do we understand the implication of this statement?

“I am very proud of the men and women in our Joint Services and I know they are sane people, I know they are right-thinking people, but who would tolerate this?”

Dr Ali noted that as President he will continue to fight for what is right and in support of democracy, unity and development.  Notwithstanding, he said he has faith in democracy and in Guyanese to do the right thing by the leadership of the PPP/C.

He said the statements coming from the WPA and the failure of other Opposition members to condemn it is a reflection of the failed leadership in the APNU+AFC political opposition.

The country’s Attorney General has already called for a full investigation into Ogunseye’s statement, noting that it amounts to several criminal offences, including but not limited to, sedition, seditious libel, inciting riotous behaviour and exciting racial hostility in order to create a breakdown of law and order within the State of Guyana.

1 Comment
  1. derk says

    This behaviour is natural for these persons since they lack the capacity to think otherwise therefore they and those who perpetuate such activity must be condemned locally and internationally.
    Guyana is recovering from the negative impact of the previous poor administration and is now on the trajectory to development which is unmatched and must not be derailed by so-called politicians who seems to be in as state of cachexia and retrograde in their thoughts.

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