Tony Vieira's Comments
18 October 2017

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Twilight Zone
(Aired 24 February 2006)

   Rod Sterling introduced the series the twilight Zone, one of the sites on the internet describes the show this way, "it was one of televisions most rightly revered series which ran between 1959 to 1964, and stands as the role model for TV anthologies. Its trenchant Sci-Fi/fantasy parables explore humanity's hopes, despairs, prides and prejudices in metaphoric ways that conventional drama cannot"

  I don't know about all of that intellectual interpretation stuff, what I remember are the completely unbelievable situations various people suddenly find themselves in, for example some poor sap waking up one day to discover that he is invisible, or does not exist, or that he has become someone else, or that he has been sent to the past or the future. Now I want you to know that I, like the people in the series wake up some mornings and discover things which makes me feel that I have entered the Twilight Zone, and so I thought that tonight I should share some of the days when I felt that way with you.

   First on my list of recent excursions into the twilight Zone would have to be our president Bharat Jagdeo declaring on the front page of one of our newspapers that he has zero tolerance for liars! I'll repeat this, Jagdeo is telling us that he has zero tolerance for liars! In Tuesday 21st of February I again entered the twilight zone when I read that Mr. Jagdeo vows to break GT&T's monopoly in telecommunications! Ladies and gentlemen I have been waiting for the decision of my constitutional challenge to the radio monopoly matter for two years, to clarify this so that there is no misunderstanding, this case was over two years ago ladies and Gentlemen, I am waiting two years for the learned "acting" Judge to give me his decision. Clearly he is afraid of the executive not appointing him if he rules against the government's and Mr. Jagdeo's monopoly in radio!

   I feel that I am in the Twilight Zone when I see Goffy Da Silva in the newspaper telling us that he will be issuing casino Gambling licenses pending legislation, during this excursion to the Twilight Zone I discover that these licenses will be given to anyone who decides to help this government out of the mess they are in with the world cup cricket next year, and that by building a hotel now, they will get a gambling license, two years ago I said that that we do not have the necessary hotel accommodation to host the World Cup Cricket, Goofy only just woke up! But now I understand the situation, I need not add that not one afro Guyanese is short listed as getting a casino license. Now commencing this type of gambling in this country is bound to cause huge contention and confrontation from the Christians and the Muslims estimated at 61% of our population so you have to be living in the twilight zone as Goofy Da Silva is, to think that this will happen soon. But to announce it now is shooting yourself in your political head.

    Of course we must not forget the Amerindian Bill passed in parliament last week, the government claimed that they have been in consultation for two years to pass what the Stabroek News called this historic bill, its historic all right, it's a historic fraud, since after two years of consultation every Amerindian organisation in the country has denounced it and have claimed that they had recommended changes but practically none had been implemented, The matter will now doubtless proceed to court, the alleged consultation was a sham, a lie, and the Amerindian associations thought that were in the twilight zone when it was passed in the parliament last week! It just couldn't be happening and the rest of us just watched and did nothing.

    We again enter the twilight Zone when we are told that Manzoor Nadir is running with the PPP in elections 2006, well I am a member of the UF and I have two friends in Pouderoyen who will tell you that in 2001 Nadir came to region 3 and asked them to put their names down on his list of candidates even though they told him that they were not UF supporters, they were told that it was not a problem, they could vote for whoever they wanted but they should allow the UF to put their names down as candidates, Nadir couldn't even raise 65 supporters in 2001. I also attended what Nadir called a congress last year, I stood at the door for over one hour to see if anyone was required to show their UF party green card, no one did and when I asked the young lady sitting there why this was so, she told me that this was the opening ceremony but that at the beginning of the actual congress she will be issuing new name plates identifying UF members who would be eligible to vote in the congress. She never did, now since I did not recognise this young lady I asked one of the actual members who she was, I was told that she was not a member of the UF, she was Nadir's secretary from the ministry of trade. Ladies and gentlemen Ramoutar can say what he wants, the UF, without the PPP's money and Nadir bribing people to turn up cannot produce 100 supporters. According to the representation of the people's act that is illegal. I am dying for one of you to sue me, go ahead! I went around that crowd and asked them how long they were a member of the UF, not one told me that they were a member for any substantial time, I mentioned it to several of the Journalists assembled there and I invited them to ask the same question.

   During this entire debacle with the Amerindian Bill not once did the UF which claims huge support from the Amerindian community came out in condemnation of this atrocity. Only in the Twilight Zone can the UF get even one seat.

    Then we have the Twilight Zone episode of waking up one day confronted by something called Robert Persaud MBA. Curious I decided to look into the matter and I discover that Robert Persaud MBA got this degree whilst in office as the liaison arranger for Jagdeo; the rest of the country completely missed the point here, Lambada had to travel to Barbados several times a week to attend these classes, now unless Lambada became a millionaire overnight we the people of Guyana probably paid for all of this extravagance! And it was un-necessary since in his case MBA stands for Member of Bad Administration, Lambada did not have to go to Barbados to qualify for that!

   Given this country's history regarding our disastrous relationship with communist Russia and what the US and the UK did to us in the 60's and 70'S, I feel that I am in the twilight zone when I see that having ran afoul of the European Union, the British and the US, who have become fed up with our incompetence and corrupt practices and have decided that feasibility studies will have to be conducted for every project proposed by this government or no further loans will be given, instead of mending our fences with these nations and putting a halt to the corruption, abuses and incompetence which can force better accountability and good governance in the execution of loans and grants from these democratic countries, we have decide again, without any one of us who are citizens of this country being consulted, that to hell with the British Commonwealth, the USA and The European Union, we are going to forge closer ties with Communist Cuba and Communist China, countries which to this day perpetrate the worst possible acts of human right violations and allow no dissent whatsoever, and we are not partners with these people, we are taking their aid and their handouts making this nation beholden to them, will we never learn? It is really like the Twilight Zone!

     I feel that I am in the Twlight zone when I look at the newspaper on Sunday February 19th 2006 and see one Dr. Chatterpaul Ramcharran headlined on the front page of the Chronicle declaring that our manufacturers "must shape up or close down" this man is supposed to be in charge of our standards Bureau, and it totally escapes him that it is costing our manufacturing sector 30 US cents a kilowatt hour for electricity, and they will soon have to compete with 8 US cents a Kw. hr. in Trinidad. Instead of telling the government to pull its socks up and give us cheaper power, he tells manufacturers to tighten up! It also seems to have completely escaped everyone's attention that unless there is some type of change in Guyana we will have no skilled workers left in this country when CSME allows free movement of people, even in Barbados today my friend the President of the CBU, tells me that if all of the Guyanese tradesmen left Barbados, the building of all the 4 Billion US dollars investment projects that Owen Arthur has attracted to Barbados over the past 5 years would grind to a HALT!