Just one week after the General Secretary of the People’s Progressive Party, Clement Rohee, declared that foreign governments should not meddle in the affairs of an independent Guyana, he has now found himself trying to defend that statement when compared to the PPP’s calls for foreign help before it got into power in 1992.
At his Monday morning Freedom House press briefing, Mr. Rohee was asked what is the difference between the involvement of foreign states in Guyana politics before the PPP got into power and the involvement of the same states today. He said before 1992, the involvement of foreign states could be seen as “justified meddling”.
“I don’t think in 1992 or prior 1992, that was meddling. If it was meddling, it was justified meddling”, Rohee said. He explained that the involvement of foreign states was welcomed during that time in Guyana’s history because there was an “undemocratic government” in place.
Mr. Rohee further explained that his party successfully lobbied the US Government and US government officials to get involved in bringing about change in Guyana at the time and that was not an issue since it centred around democracy. When it was pointed out to him that the opposition parties are raising democratic concerns today also, he said “obviously if the opposition is accusing us of that, it is to be expected because we don’t expect the Opposition to say we have a wonderful democracy in Guyana”.
The US and British Governments have both issued calls for Guyana to return to a parliamentary democracy which has been put on hold since the President’s decision to suspend the parliament.
Both governments are pressing President Donald Ramotar to quickly name a date for elections to be held. The Government has dismissed those calls and the President has indicated that he will name the state very soon.
Filed: 19th January 2015
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