• 20 Jul, 2024

Hate and Innuendoes at Washington Conference on Racism in Guyana; condemn use of ‘House Slave’ by Burke and others

Hate and Innuendoes at Washington Conference on Racism in Guyana; condemn use of ‘House Slave’ by Burke and others

Hate and Innuendoes at Washington Conference on Racism in Guyana; condemn use of ‘House Slave’ by Burke and others

Several Members of Parliament in Guyana and a sleuth of race baiters gathered in Washington DC at the Rickford Burke organized "race conference" to lambaste the ruling PPPC administration in Guyana. The theme of the conference focused on exposing what they asserted is "racism and dictatorship in Guyana". Speakers made claims of racism and authoritarian rule but no empirical data was offered to buttress them. Members of US  Congress chided the  for lack of evidence to back their imagined and wild allegations.  It was all hate and innuendoes. Anyone objective person analyzing Guyana affairs or visiting the country would come away with an inescapable conclusion that Guyana is a functioning democracy where everyone has an equal place. 


I was not impressed with the speakers. They engaged in demagoguery and cheap shots with no rational thoughts. Most of the speakers were filled with race hate and rage for the PPPC and its supporters and for Africans who align with the government. Rickford Burke, the main organizer of the conference, referred to Africans who support the PPPC as “house slaves” – that in itself is a reflection of the attitude of the organizers and speakers towards those in disagreement with him. If you don’t agree with the organizers, then you are labeled a house slave by racial entrepreneurs determined to promote disunity in Guyana. The use of that term don’t belong in Guyanese context. Its usage is condemned. 

There were several absurd incendiary claims clearly designed to win sympathy from the US administration and members of Congress. But the plan will fail because the policymakers in Washington, Members of Congress, the US Embassy in Guyana, and Afro Guyanese in the diaspora and at home know who stole democracy (1968 to 1992 and again 2015 to 2020). Who were the real dictators and who attempted to rig the 2020 general elections? The whole world saw the public spectacle of the PNCR (APNU)-AFC’s attempt to rig the elections. 


aubrey norton pncr


One agent provocateur or agitator after another leveled allegations against the Guyana government for lack of democracy and racism.  Yet these very accusers engage in unbridled freedom of speech in Guyana making those very same allegations about racism and when asked to provide evidence to back them, they came up empty.  Member of Parliament Amanza Walton-Desir admitted that much when she stated empirical data can't be had. 

On the issue of democracy, the conference was very undemocratic. The conference itself was (is) selective in attendees and attendance. There was restrictive attendance. Critics of the PNCR opposition and of Rickford Burke and organizers or those Africans who disagree with the charges of racism leveled against the PPPC were denied registration and entrance at the conference. The organizers were very strict in enforcing who could attend the conference and only those cleared by the organizers were granted entry. Pick and choose who could attend the conference is not democracy. 


Hate-and Innuendoes at Washington Conference on Racism in Guyana


On the issue of alleged PPPC government racism, where is the evidence? Ms. Maxine Waters of Texas and other members of the Black Caucus asked for evidence to buttress allegations of racism against Africans. They came up empty blaming the PPPC for not providing info. The truth is there is no racism under the PPP administration.  
Looking at the composition of the government, it is truly representative of the cosmopolitan nature of the country, of all ethnicities and faiths. Over a third of the Ministers of government and heads of government agencies in proportion with the composition of the population, and half of the Permanent Secretaries are Africans. A tenth is of Amerindian or indigenous people. Nearly 20% are of Mixed descent. The Prime Minister is an African. Some 75% of the bureaucracy are Africans along with 95% of the army, 75% of Police Force, and 70% teaching staff.  


In terms of distributions of resources, Africans get a majority of public housing. Africans and Mixed are also represented among the awardees of contracts and government scholarships in tertiary institutions. In every area of allocation of resources, Africans are over-represented. The preceding facts cannot happen in a society in which Africans face discrimination. 

It is noted that there is m assive infrastructure primarily in areas where African Guyanese dwell and distribution of grants to all, and yet no speaker found anything positive to say about the government or the progress in the country over the last three years. 

While the accusers level uninformed baseless allegations in Washington, the Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo was in Linden, a PNCR stronghold, where he was accorded rock star welcome. (Look at the attached photo of a massive crowd)! Lindeners mobbed him for pix. Is that  evidence of anti-African racism? The VP is expanding PPPC support base while racial entrepreneurs are making unsupported accusations. 

Clearly, contrary to the accusations by organizers of the conference in Washington, Africans are not victims of racism in Guyana. They are the largest beneficiaries of the state. And their views are not censored, not by the state or private media. They freely express their views in all forms of media and lobby government for greater benefits – hallmarks of a free, open, engaging, democratic society. 


Yours truly, 

Michael McIntosh