Describing several cases of
poor, innocent Indians whose lives have been snuffed out in the
rampant and uncontrolled crime plaguing the country, Mr. Dev stated
that the affected individuals built whatever success they had on the
plank of thrift and hard work. Dev contended that these crimes have
the flavour of racial hatred embedded in them, as Blacks routinely
pick on Indians at will whether in the latter’s homes, businessplaces,
on the streets or as commuters in vehicles.
The ROAR Leader said that
despite the army being stationed at Buxton where many of the criminals
are holed out, and police patrolling the area, Blacks attack Indians
there indiscriminately and also invade the neighbouring village of
Annandale, shooting, pillaging and robbing with utter disregard for
the law or the law enforcers present.
"What manner of people are in
charge who cannot respond to their supporters’ sufferings?" Dev
queried rhetorically in reference to the governing party drawing
political support from the Indian stronghold of Annandale.
Mr. Dev argued that 40 years
ago this same scenario was played out at Wismar resulting in 276
houses burnt, dozens of women raped and 4,000 people fleeing to safer
grounds. Then, on June 1, 1964 Mrs Janet Jagan, in protest, resigned
her post as Minister of Home Affairs saying that the police stood by
and saw Indian women raped, and the armed forces stood by and saw
Indians being slaughtered and did nothing.
Mr. Dev charged that what is
presently happening to Indians in Guyana is nothing but a betrayal of
their trust by the ruling People’s Progressive Party (PPP). He stated
that that party has repeatedly failed to do the correct thing as a
government, namely, to assert its ability to rule for all of Guyana.
The PPP fails to come to the rescue of Indians for fear of being
looked upon as racist, Dev asserted. So when Indians are attacked, the
PPP disingeniously explains the aggression as being an act triggered
by victims themselves, Dev explained. He offered as an example that
Indians killed by gangs of armed men are being incriminated by the
PPP’s rumour mill which puts them down as drug dealers and narco
But poor Indians, some of them
old and sickly, being robbed and killed in Annan-dale and Enterprise
fly in the face of such unfounded and oftentimes malicious betrayal by
the ruling Indian-supported government, Dev bemoaned.
The US trained lawyer argued that the PPP’s
allegiance to the norms of communism blinds it from seeing the root of
the problem which is based on race. The PPP ideologically does not
accept "race" as a material factor in Guyana’s political dynamics,
said Dev, and concludes that they continue making the same mistakes
they made decades ago.
Dr. Jagan, Dev informed, in
the 1960s wrote to the Foreign Office detailing that the reason he was
thrown out of office was that the Volunteer Force and Police Force
were mostly Africans who did not offer any kind of support or succour
to the resistance by Indians.
The Guyanese MP suggested that
all the evidence points to the need for "balancing the forces" before
order or equilibrium can be sustained in Guyana. The International
Commission of Jurists in 1965 came to this same conclusion, said Dev.
"In politics, it is not only
expected, it is demanded that you represent those who elected you in
"Politics is about power but
the PPP does not understand that," the Guyanese politician said. "It
doesn’t matter what your intentions are, politicians have to be judged
only by the consequences of their action," Dev reasoned.
And power, according to Dev,
is not merely holding on to office, but to be able to set programmes
and have them executed.
He referred to the reality of
Guyanese politics where Indians, if they vote en bloc, will always win
elections. But the coercive arms of the state - police, armay and
civil service - remains under the control of the Blacks. This, argues
Dev, is the root cause of the nation’s security dilemma.
Dev gave a brief outline of
his party’s plan for making Guyana a liveable society for all the
people. He proposes a Federal arrangement at the political level in
which "all groups - Indians, Africans and Amerindians - would be amply
represented in the corridors of power.
He further proposes a system of shared
governance in the short term with a balancing of the forces as a
prerequisite. Dev argues for the creation of a culture of cooperation
and mutual respect to return the country from its present course of