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Reflection of Events in Guyana

by Nandi Charles

It seems almost like a dream or as if it were out of complete reality. The events that have been occurring recently in Guyana have affected me a great deal and have even made me a bit emotional to some extent. I remembered a time, a time when one could go cruising about the town or even staying out later than nine at night without any worries on ones mind. Today, things are not the same; fear and fright are the two things that are on the minds of every other Guyanese person in the country. Desperation and destitution are the only ways of life some people know, while hostility and aggressiveness seem to be practiced on a daily basis by the rebels. It is so pitiful, that a nation once held together by pride and harmony, is now a ghost town full of rebels with presumptuous attitudes performing outrageous and horrific crimes.

I realize that upon hearing about my country, it would not be surprising that you may know little about it, and that is acceptable. But if you do have knowledge of my homeland already, then that would make the reading more interesting. I was born in Georgetown and as a citizen of Guyana I lived there for eleven years. I migrated to The Bahamas where I spent the other few years of my life before coming to the United States to reside. Growing up in Guyana, I have always remembered my childhood to be fun and exciting as I would imagine any nationalistic citizen of a country would feel. In the early 90s standard of living there was reasonably good, even though not to its full potential since we were experiencing a mild depression. In recent times, now that I have migrated from the country, the economy is in a prolonged stagnant and paralyzed state and is from my personal observation regressing rapidly each day. More than often, a series of killings have been occurring to the point where we are now known more for our sky- rocketing crime rates than our densely populated forests and industries. This is due to the multiple robberies and killings performed by bandits or so called bandits as the politicians want us to believe. It is also apparent that our government has been allowing a great number of deportees from America and elsewhere to return to Guyana which has further contributed to the crime rate level boosting.

Guyanas reserves are officially next to nothing and the value of the currency is very low. In the workforce, unemployment is at a high and our precious resources are not being wisely used, though our government takes great pleasure in exploiting it or allowing immediate neighboring countries such as Brazil and Venezuela, to take full advantage of our resources. Migration in Guyana seems to be another problem since most of the qualified workers have migrated elsewhere. Guyanas brain drain has led to a more limited amount of teaching staff in educational institutions which causes further problems of inadequacies in the learning institutions. In addition, many of the equipment being used in the institutions are of inferior qualities which I believe can be improved. Presently, the law enforcement unit has not done enough to secure and protect citizens as they should. In fact, they have been involved in a slew of corrupted events, from the illegal selling of weapons and narcotics to neglecting to serve citizens in times of devastation and emergency. There has also been great amounts of inequality to some extent since many qualified persons are being replaced by unsuitable individuals on the job market for unacceptable reasons like discrimination and prejudice. Health care in our country is in a poor state and needs to be more developed and updated. Social divisions have been a thing of the present and have caused many riots and bickering among the Guyanese people, mainly between the Afro- Guyanese and the predominant and reigning race, who are the Indo- Guyanese.

Many of these problems have led some people who are suppressed and impoverished to make ways of living through illegal methods. Guyana has high rates of illegal activities occurring and it is not that most of these individuals who perform these acts are not qualified, it is just that they are not given equal opportunity in society or a well paying job as they might have had in the past. Guyanas economy has changed drastically since I was last living there about a decade ago and this can directly be attributed to the corruption of our government, The Peoples Progressive Party (PPP) which was unanimously voted and supported by the Indo- Guyanese. Although the country does have positive and good aspects to it, these are just some recent events that have been frustrating the nation. One of my greatest wishes, is for the government to be changed and for Guyana to be revived and rejuvenated to its original state which I once remembered as a little girl.

I especially decided to choose this story to cover in detail because it was very sentimental for me and I also thought it might be appropriate to bring these events to light for others to understand what is going on in Guyana. I feel the need to also speak out about what is going on with hope of the country making a transition for the best away from its poverty stricken state. Justice should prevail and equality ought to be properly implemented throughout the nation. It finally comes down to the fact that I share great nationalism for Guyana and that is why I am so persistent in getting the information out because this has had a profound effect on me. These events have caused me to become more resolute in following a career in broadcasting or journalism since I feel that I can be instrumental in creating a change in my country one day. By presenting this situation to the right forum, I may be able to encourage humanitarian organizations to investigate the well being of the Guyanese people and bring justice to all of those in need.

Guyanese Thoughts and Discussions - Article is property of Nandi Charles.