Guyana’s President Donald Ramotar today said he has no problem with recent statements about race made by Former President Bharrat Jagdeo.
Last week, Mr. Jagdeo used the funeral service of Peoples Progressive Party stalwart Reepu Daman Persaud to tell mourners that there is a “resurgence” of sentiments against Guyanese of East Indian descent. That statement has come in for heavy criticism and some members in the PPP have sought to distance themselves from the statement.
Today, President Ramotar said “the opposition press seems to all be focusing on that without mentioning the point that Jagdeo was speaking first and foremost about equal opportunity for all the people”.
He accused the media of ignoring issues of race when they were raised by other persons. “When racism has been pouring out of every pore of other elements, I don’t hear you making any comments”, the President said, in response to questions from News Source.
Pressed by News Source about whether he and the party he heads as General Secretary endorses the Jagdeo statement, President Ramotar said “I don’t see anything wrong with his statement because fundamentally he was speaking about equal opportunity for all and the insinuations that are being put in some areas particularly with the court case”.
The President was referring to the ongoing libel case that the former President Jagdeo brought against newspaper columnist Freddie Kissoon. During the case, Kissoon’s attorneys have been highlighting the race of persons hired and appointment to senior government positions under Jagdeo’s watch.
The Former President sought to fight back press reports on his statement at the funeral by painting a picture of the Stabroek News and other media houses having a problem with him.