President Donald Ramotar’s latest ‘feral blast’ at Aishalton Village expressed exactly the character of the President himself and the attitude of the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Administration towards citizens of this country.
The ‘Aishalton incident,’ which occurred on 3rd December 2014,explains why our political culture has deteriorated so rapidly over the last fifteen years under Presidents Bharrat Jagdeo and Donald Ramotar. It explains why the public has lost respect for the President. It explains also why ordinary Guyanese no longer have much confidence in the Government. It explains why there have been so many public protests against political and governmental officials all around the country.
A major cause of the collapse of confidence has been the President’s own crass, coarse and crude choice of words in his public statements. There are several examples of such boorishness which seem not to be accidental but calculated to insult individuals:
- Aishalton: President Ramotar was recorded at Aishalton Village in the Rupununi Region as saying to John Adams, a 29-year-old secondary school teacher: “You don’t know anything about Jagdeo. If he been here, he might a slap you, coz (because) you stupid.” Adams was also accosted by members of the Presidential Guard and told to stop heckling the President while he was speaking. When Adams refused, “he was slapped repeatedly by the guards” and chased away.
- Babu John: President Ramotar, at the commemoration ceremony of the deaths of Cheddi and Janet Jagan on 2nd March 2014 at Babu John on the Corentyne Coast, insulted Moses Nagamootoo, Vice-chairman of the Alliance For Change (AFC) over comments he made about Guyana’s debt situation. Ramotar referred to him as “the jackass Nagamootoo” (Kaieteur News, March 5, 2013).
- Whim: President Ramotar told a rally at Whim Village on the Corentyne Coast: “[Moses] Nagamootoo is like a dog lunging at his shadow; at his reflection! He was expecting Ramjattan to make him Vice-President! Ramjattan is a puppet! Ramjattan is a sham… So, if Nagamooto think that Ramjattan go make him Vice-President, Lauraah!” (Kaieteur News, November 10, 2011).
- Port Mourant: President Ramotar told the PPP Congress at Port Mourant on the Corentyne Coast that he always knew that Moses Nagamootoo was “a man with a flawed character who had a penchant for opportunism.” (Stabroek News, August 3, 2013).
- Georgetown: President Ramotar falsely claimed that Leader of the Opposition, Brigadier David Granger, had knowledge of 155 weapons that went missing from the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) while he was the Commander, after being issued to the People’s National Congress (PNC) Government in the 1970s. (Guyana Times, August 30, 2014). President Ramotar said, further, “….When those weapons were given to the PNC, the present leader of the PNC was the commander of the army at the time. And now that he is the leader of the PNC, I would expect that he would make a genuine effort to return the weapons that were given to the PNC.” (Stabroek News, August 30, 2014).
President Donald Ramotar, over the past three years, has degraded the high office of President of the Republic with his invective and vituperative language. The frequency and vulgarity of his offensive statements against certain persons and in public places suggest that there is a deeper disdain and reckless disregard both for the Presidency and the people. He is bringing the entire nation into disrepute.
A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) calls on President Donald Ramotar to issue, immediately, an apology to Mr. Adams in particular, and the indigenous people, in general for his vile language and the violent behaviour of his guards.
APNU calls on the President to desist from further ‘feral blasts’ especially during the current elections campaign. APNU warns the President that such provocative language is damaging political, social and racial relations in this country.