Parties should allow Members to choose Leadership in Guyana and Caribbean
A recent news story indicated that an Indian-woman, Ms. Kamala Devi Bharrat, was allegedly assaulted by a Mr. Ossie Rodgers, a popular PPP operative who usually features prominently when PPP functionaries visit New York. (See “Bath woman reports assault by Ossie Rodgers -unhappy with police response,” - SN, Oct. 18, 2022).
In a Facebook video, Ms. Bharrat, a working-class single-parent woman who does sales and cleaning at a Chinese business place in Bath claims that Rodgers slapped and gun-butted her, requiring a hospital visit. (See KN, “PPP/C activist skips country after allegedly assaulting woman,” Oct. 18, 2022).
The Minister of Home Affairs/Government side must explain why Mr. Rodgers was allowed to leave the country soon after the incident, and why no charges were laid against Mr. Rodgers, if Ms. Bharrat’s charges were valid. Is it normal practice for what happened here? Some questions arise. If it is true Mr. Rodgers gun-butted Ms. Bharrat, is that a proper use of the firearm? Was the firearm seized by the Police? If not, why not?
It is very important that under the PPP’s reign that justice is meted out against any alleged perpetrator when Indo-Guyanese, or anyone, are victims of violence, especially involving the politically connected. Under the PPP, there were no charges against those who brutalized Indo-Guyanese in the West Coast Berbice violence when Indians were pulled out of vehicles and beaten and vehicles damaged as people were on their journeys to the airport or their homes. In the Mon Repos violence against Indians, we are still awaiting the Attorney-General’s promise that more people will be charged. All Lives Matter . There is an abundance of video footage evidence capturing the brutalities, so the lack of charges by the Police under the PPP’s watch is bewildering.
If Mr. Rogers was guilty of malfeasance and was allowed to leave the county because he was a close friend of the PPP, that will be very bad. If he was allowed to leave because the Police determined he committed no crime, they must explain that to a watching public that expects that justice will be meted out fairly without favour and ill-will.
We hope Red Thread and other women’s groups and the Human Services Minister will look into this matter. Maybe the DPP can chime in too. If Ms. Bharrat’s charges are validated then we hope the PPP will distance itself from this operative, and that the New York folks who like to “poojay karay” when the PPP politicians visit will organize boycotts instead. We want “One Guyana” and “One System of Justice” not different strokes for different folks based on political connections. We look forward to justice for Ms. Bharrat!
Dr. Jerry Jailall