Jagdeo responds: Says his comments abroad are not different from those made in Guyana

Jagdeo responds: Says his comments abroad are not different from those made in Guyana

Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo has responded to the government’s scathing criticism of comments he made recently while speaking to a crowd of Guyanese immigrants in New York.

Jagdeo has not only defended his statements which the government has described as “race baiting” among other things, but continues to stand by it.

“And I find it strange that a Government would release a lengthy statement based on a short clip of a section of the comments I made in New York. What is stranger is that the comments I made in New York were no different to the ones I have made in Guyana,” Jagdeo said.

During that event on Saturday in New York, Jagdeo told a mostly indo-Guyanese crowd that Guyanese of Indian origin are under attack in Guyana and that they must work together to take back Guyana “from these people”.

He blamed Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo for penning the government’s statement but insisted that his comments were consistent with those expressed in the past, signalling that there was nothing wrong with them.

“At press conferences and on the campaign trail in the lead up to the March 2016 Local Government elections, I spoke to the issues of racial and political discrimination, the lack of an economic plan, the taxation policies, as well as the repressive laws that have been advanced and the threats to local democracy under the APNU+AFC Coalition,” he added.

Jagdeo said despite the charges, his record on bolstering racial harmony and advancing equal development across the country, regardless of race, speaks for itself.

“That is not a position I need to defend. However, I have spoken out and will continue to speak out about the injustices against our people,” he further noted.

In May last year, the former President had appeared at the Whim Magistrates Court where he was formally charged with racial incitement as was alleged by political activist Christopher Ram.

The charge against Jagdeo stemmed from remarks he made at Babu John, Port Mourant in March at the commemorative event for late Presidents Cheddi and Janet Jagan.

In a statement last evening, the Government said at a time when Guyanese are focused on the efforts to foster closer relations and achieve a greater level of social cohesion, “the Coalition Government considers it reprehensible that the Opposition Leader, Mr. Jagdeo chooses to sow seeds of division, discord and race hate.”

According to the Government, the claim by Jagdeo that there is an “assault on people of Indian origin” is despicable, without any basis and “a complete figment of Mr. Jagdeo’s imagination. On the contrary, the policies of the Coalition Government are designed to achieve the good life for all Guyanese, not a handpicked few as was the case under the PPP regime which was rejected by the Guyanese electorate on May 11, 2015 in free and fair elections.”

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