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2019

Charrandas Persaud: The Gandhi of Guyana

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09 Jan 2019 13:15 #368098 by chairman
Love him or hate him, Guyanese Member of Parliament (MP) Charrandas Persaud had the courage to stand and swim against the political rip currents of the Essequibo River.

And for that extraordinary courage based on a conscience vote, he must be honoured, even idolised as the Mahatma Gandhi of Guyana. Already there are plans to name babies after him as well as streets in his native Berbice. A meme with his portrait on a champagne bottle has been created, and a song on the theme “Charrandas is a Hero”, produced by Rishaad Ishmael, is being shared on social media.

On that historic day in Guyana (December 21, 2018), Charrandas voted against his own governing party for the opposition People’s Progress Party (PPP) led by Bharrat Jagdeo. MPs Jaipaul Sharma, Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine and Sydney Allicock did not have that strength of character to take that leap. Charrandas’ one dissident vote changed the course of electoral history in Guyana by constitutionally toppled a government from power which is still stubbornly and illegally refusing to resign.

Charrandas’s single vote made history in Guyana and the Commonwealth Caribbean, except for the Turks and Caicos Islands. On his Facebook page, Trinidadian political scientist Dr Kirk Meighoo stated: “It has NEVER happened before.” (23/12/18). He added that the no-confidence-motion victory demonstrates strength in political democracies like Guyana. “For parliaments to work, our parliamentarians need to represent their constituencies, and not their party or race.” [A theory negating Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo’s belief (Kaieteur News5/1/19)].

Meighoo went on to write that no one can accuse Charrandas of being racially motivated by voting for an Indian-dominated party. On every occasion for the past three years, Charrandas voted for the African-dominated party in Parliament, against his own conscience. Indeed, Charrandas worked at every level to electorally overthrow the ruling PPP from power and install an African-dominated coalition in government in 2015.

Charrandas risked his life for conscience

Charrandas knew that he could have been dead at the hands of hoodlums supporting the ruling People’s National Congress (PNC)-led coalition government headed by a retired brigadier, President David Granger. The PNC has a long bloody history of harassment, imprisonment, torture, violence and murder of political opponents.

Political opponents of the PNC such as Ohene Koama, Edward Dublin and Dr. Walter Rodney of the Working People’s Alliance (WPA) were all fatalities. Paradoxically, WPA members Dr. David Hinds, Dr. Roopnaraine and Tacuma Ogunseye have joined the current PNC-led coalition.

As an Indo-Guyanese, Charrandas and his family were more of a risk of being physically attacked than other citizens. In the publication entitled In Transit: Gangs and Criminal Networks in Guyana(2012), human security researchers Taylor Owen and Alexandre Grisby wrote that “the fact that the Guyanese police are largely Afro-Guyanese added to the Indo-Guyanese distrust of the security forces and reinforced ethnic tensions” (page 18).

This independent research project produced in Geneva should be instructive to Minister of Public Security Khemraj Ramjattan. He as well as the families of other members of the coalition government such as Moses Nagamootoo, Dr Rupert Roopnaraine, Jaipaul Sharma and Hemraj Rajkumar are still not safer.

“Charrandas you gun dead tonight.”

Charrandas said he has spent sleepless nights before me made his conscience vote. He spoke repeatedly about imminent death to reporters, saying: “My life may go, but you know what … I will die a happy person with a clear, God-damn conscience.”

He said Public Health Minister “Volda Lawrence was sitting in the cafeteria and said whoever crosses the floor, she will kill the person; throw them over the rail.” In the full glare of media cameras, Charrandas was being abused verbally and/or physically by Derek Basdeo and Government MP, Jermaine Figueira, who was seen “hitting me…and cussing me.” Government MP Jennifer Wade shouted: “Charrandas, you gun dead tonight” (St. Lucia Times1/1/19).

In expectation of his likely murder, Charrandas had written a farewell letter to his son “encouraging him to be a good father.” In the event that “something happens to him, Persaud said he [had] written a letter detailing the reason for his action for which he has asked his secretary to make public” (Guyana Chronicle22/12/18).

Charrandas said: “I knew that my life was in terrible danger… So I sought help [to leave Parliament building and the airport the next day]. I could not trust Khemraj Ramjattan and his police …” (Kaieteur News3/1/19).

As expected, the illegal PNC-led coalition government is out to get Charrandas by any means. Ramjattan and his co-conspirators are alleging that Charrandas is a Judas who was bribed to defect, has dual-citizenship, is a gambler (both only now “discovered”), breached airport security protocol, fled to Canada instead of Barbados, etc., etc. Whether found guilty or not, these dirt-digging and mudslinging tactics cannot stain the purity of character of Charrandas Persaud.

Dr Kumar Mahabir is a Trinidad and Tobago anthropologist who has published 11 books. Article submitted to the editor.

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21 Jan 2019 13:19 #368329 by ketchim
Charandass review Irfan Ali academic credentials ? lol

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21 Jan 2019 13:40 #368330 by Artemis10
U should be happy for your fellow west coast bai

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21 Jan 2019 13:46 #368332 by chairman
did irfan graduate from anywhere?

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21 Jan 2019 17:32 #368349 by ketchim

Artemis10 wrote: U should be happy for your fellow west coast bai

me fram Kitty and Chair from Corentyne !
Belle hubby, Retiree from west coast ~

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21 Jan 2019 17:54 #368350 by chairman
We will see what Ali can do

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22 Jan 2019 09:30 #368368 by chairman
General Secretary of the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) Amna Ally yesterday said that the party endorses President David Granger to run for a second term.

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22 Jan 2019 10:10 #368382 by chairman
In expectation of his likely murder, Charrandas had written a farewell letter to his son “encouraging him to be a good father.” In the event that “something happens to him, Persaud said he [had] written a letter detailing the reason for his action for which he has asked his secretary to make public” (Guyana Chronicle22/12/18).

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22 Jan 2019 12:38 #368395 by The Captain
bunch of comics

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23 Jan 2019 10:40 #368469 by chairman

Always tell someone how you feel because opportunities are lost in the blink of an eye but regret can last a lifetime.
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23 Jan 2019 10:50 - 23 Jan 2019 10:50 #368473 by ketchim
aaahhhhahahahahahaha : good grief thank goodness iz a Guyanese ! :woohoo:

this is artemis kinda video !!!
Last edit: 23 Jan 2019 10:50 by ketchim.

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23 Jan 2019 13:57 #368501 by chairman

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24 Jan 2019 10:35 #368530 by chairman
ARTICLES 106 (6) and 106(7) of the Constitution of Guyana ought to be interpreted together; to do the contrary, would be a recipe for anarchy, Attorney General Basil Williams told Chief Justice Roxane George-Wiltshire in the High Court as he rebutted arguments by Attorney-at-Law Kamal Ramkarran that Cabinet must resign.

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13 Apr 2019 12:05 #370884 by ketchim
Wonder who motivated this fellah all the way from Scarborough ? B)

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14 Apr 2019 10:58 #370891 by chairman
Jagdeo .may get arrested by Grange

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