MOST READ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next FIFA has previously also banned referees from Niger and Tanzania and federation officials from Zambia and Mozambique for links to Perumal, a notorious fixer from Singapore.Perumal often provided referees for corrupt international games for betting scams. His schemes included fixing warmup games for South Africa before it hosted the 2010 World Cup.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets offers from Asia, Australian ball clubsFIFA did not specify which games or schemes the Botswana official took bribes for, but said his offenses were governed by the 2006 version of its ethics code. Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? ‘Marawi hero’ is new commander of Army’s 1st Infantry Division ZURICH— FIFA says its ethics judges have banned a soccer official from Botswana for life for taking bribes linked to convicted match-fixer Wilson Perumal.FIFA says Mooketsi Kgotlele, the former general secretary of the Botswana Football Association, was also fined 50,000 Swiss francs ($50,100). It is unclear how FIFA can enforce fines on officials unable to return to the sport.ADVERTISEMENT Steaming fissures on Taal Volcano Island spotted LOOK: LJ Reyes, Paolo Contis celebrate 1st birthday of baby Summer Benefits of township living Duterte lambasts Catholic Church anew in curse-laden speech before Filipino Baptists MRT-3 files raps vs engineer who brought ammunition to station LATEST STORIES Sons Of Apollo releases new studio album ‘MMXX’ Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite PLAY LIST 02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award03:05Malakanyang bilib sa Phivolcs | Chona Yu01:26Homes destroyed after Taal Volcano eruption02:48ABS-CBN franchise has ‘natural deadline,’ no need for quo warranto — Gatchalian Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. UFC’s Jon Jones disputes strip club waitress’ assault claim View comments
Duterte lambasts Catholic Church anew in curse-laden speech before Filipino Baptists LATEST STORIES Benefits of township living View comments Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite PLAY LIST 02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award03:05Malakanyang bilib sa Phivolcs | Chona Yu01:26Homes destroyed after Taal Volcano eruption02:48ABS-CBN franchise has ‘natural deadline,’ no need for quo warranto — Gatchalian Bacolod big man Jan Colina. MPBL PHOTOBasking in the glow of his best game yet in the MPBL, Bacolod star Pao Javelona was quick to deflect credit to one of his team’s unsung heroes.“I want people to remember how good Jan Colina was when he was playing in college,” said Javelona, referring to the former Adamson big man who provided a spark in the second half of a stunning 84-82 upset of Zamboanga on Thursday night in the MPBL Lakan Season.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Steaming fissures on Taal Volcano Island spotted MRT-3 files raps vs engineer who brought ammunition to station Prodigy David upsets Asian junior champ Short on confidence and scoreless in his team’s first seven games, Colina knocked in six crucial points that helped Bacolod build enough cushion to avert a late-game collapse at Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay City.“We reminded him that he can still make an impact for us,” said Javelona, who topscored with 27 points, six rebounds and five assists. “We know he could help us in our campaign.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets offers from Asia, Australian ball clubsOne of the last teams to fill up its roster, Bacolod’s lineup is short on big men, which meant Colina, who played for Caloocan and Bulacan in the first two seasons, needed to step up for coach Vic Ycasiano’s team against a Zamboanga squad that carried a three-game winning run heading into the match.“We were looking for other sources [on offense] so we went to Jan Colina,” said Ycasiano, whose team also snapped a three-game slide and improved to 3-5 in the South division. “ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Sons Of Apollo releases new studio album ‘MMXX’ LOOK: LJ Reyes, Paolo Contis celebrate 1st birthday of baby Summer OSG petition a ‘clear sign’ of gov’t bid to block ABS-CBN franchise renewal — solon Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Colina’s baskets came at a time when the offense was going nowhere with Javelona and Mac Tallo both bottled up by the Zamboanga defense. Tallo came up with a solid outing finishing with nine points, nine rebounds and 12 assists.“I’m just happy I was able to contribute to our team’s win,” Colina said.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next
Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LOOK: Taal Volcano island 2 days after eruption Heart Evangelista, Kim Chiu, more celebs appeal for animal rescue after Taal eruption Daybreak as smoke, ash billows from Taal volcano PLAY LIST 01:04Daybreak as smoke, ash billows from Taal volcano01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown MOST READ View comments No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain salutes his fans after taking third place in the Formula One Italy Grand Prix at the Monza racetrack, in Monza, Italy, Sunday, Sept.8, 2019. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)SINGAPORE — Lewis Hamilton aims to turn up the heat in his bid for a sixth Formula One championship at this weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix.The Mercedes driver heads into Sunday’s race with a 63-point lead over teammate Valtteri Bottas.ADVERTISEMENT As with last year’s race, drivers can expect sweltering heat and humidity. In addition to the heat, a thick haze has set in over the city-state with advisories issued from the national government over “unhealthy” air conditions.Hamilton will be hoping for a repeat of the 2018 race here when he won comfortably from pole position to extend his championship lead.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4He was on a major roll entering last year’s GP, having won four of the past five races. While he already has eight wins this season, the British driver last won at the Hungarian GP in early August.“The offset schedule and the climate make it a demanding weekend for the team,” Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said of the night race. “Temperatures in the garage can easily reach 40 degrees Celsius (104 F) or more with high humidity levels as well. It’s a tough environment to work in and it’s equally challenging for the drivers and the car itself.” ‘People evacuated on their own’ Robredo to visit Batangas families displaced by Taal erruption Taal Volcano’s lava fountain weakens, but Phivolcs says it’s not sign of slowing down LATEST STORIES Germany keeps falling in FIFA rankings led by Belgium Teen dead, another hurt in vehicular collision in Santiago City Max Verstappen, third in the drivers’ standings, has been on the front row at Marina Bay the past two years while Bottas has never started in the top three.Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and Hamilton are the only two drivers on the grid with victories at Singapore — with four wins each.But Vettel, whose contract ends in 2020, is now 22 races without a win. He has dropped down to fifth in the championship, 115 points behind Hamilton.“We have seen before that anything can happen in this race, so the final result is hard to predict,” Vettel said. “Off the track, there will also be a lot of pressure on the teams as this race is back to back with Russia.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Hamilton has won here the last two years. A win on Sunday would move him a step closer to his third straight championship and sixth overall, moving him just one away from equaling Michael Schumacher’s all-time record of seven titles.Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc heads into Singapore having won the previous two races this season. After his first-ever F1 victory in Spa at the Belgian GP, the 21-year-old Leclerc became the first Ferrari driver to win the Italian GP since Fernando Alonso in 2010.Leclerc, who is now fourth in the standings, finished ninth for Sauber here last year.“Singapore is maybe the toughest track for us drivers physically, just because of the heat and the humidity,” Leclerc said. “After two positive weekends in Belgium and Italy, the race in Singapore doesn’t look as good on paper for us, because of the very different circuit layout, featuring lots of slow corners and fewer straights … but we will give our all to have a good result.”The 5-kilometer (3.1-mile) Marina Bay Street circuit is one of the hardest tracks for overtaking in F1, so whoever takes pole on Saturday will have the upper hand. The driver leading the field has won eight times in the past 10 years.ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: Kryz Uy, Slater Young expecting first son
Rafael Nadal returns to top of ATP rankings DSWD Bicol donates P1.5M worth of food packs for Taal eruption evacuees But credit should mainly go to Bonbon Batiller, who restrained the high-scoring Allyn Bulanadi for majority of the second half that told heavily on San Sebastian’s offensive ploy.Bulanadi found no open look in the final half and muffed all of his five attempts in the closing quarter to finish with 15 points on five of 17 shooting.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4Crafty point guard RK Ilagan covered for Bulanadi and erupted with a career-high 36 points, including a long three that cut the Letran lead within 81-80.Graduating forward Jerrick Balanza led five other Knights in double figures with 15 points while Batiller, also playing on his final season, contributed 14, highlighted by back-to-back threes in the third that gave them a 14-point spread. SSC 80—Ilagan 36, Bulanadi 15, Villapando 8, Calahat 7, Capobres 5, Altamirano 5, Desoyo 2, Sumoda 1, Cosari 1, Calma 0, Isidro 0.Quarters: 23-20, 50-40, 69-59, 85-80 2 village execs nabbed in Bohol buy-bust Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next SEA Games 2019: Charly Suarez stops Burmese foe, advances to boxing semi PLAY LIST 03:22SEA Games 2019: Charly Suarez stops Burmese foe, advances to boxing semi03:11SEA Games 2019: PH’s Ian Bautista boxing bantamweight semi final (HIGHLIGHTS)03:00SEA Games 2019: PH’s Aira Villegas boxing bantamweight semi final (HIGHLIGHTS)01:04Daybreak as smoke, ash billows from Taal volcano01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netMANILA, Philippines — King Caralipio and Fran Yu delivered the insurance baskets as the Letran Knights lived another day after booting out the San Sebastian Stags, 85-80, on Tuesday night in the NCAA Season 95 men’s basketball semifinals at Cuneta Astrodome.With the Stags pulling within a point and time winding down, Caralipio scored on the break before Yu sank his two free throws that sealed Letran’s win built strongly on its length and athleticism.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Phivolcs: Cloud seeding in ashfall affected areas needs study For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. 400 evacuees from Taal eruption take refuge in Mt. Banahaw ‘People evacuated on their own’ Taal Volcano’s lava fountain weakens, but Phivolcs says it’s not sign of slowing down No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist The Knights will advance to the next step of the stepladder semis against the second-ranked Lyceum Pirates on Friday where the winner meets the defending champion San Beda Red Lions in a best-of-three titular showdown.In juniors action, Yukien Andrada completed a three-point play with 35.2 seconds remaining to lift the San Beda Red Cubs past the College of St. Benilde-La Salle Greenhills Greenies, 82-79, in their semifinal playoff.The Red Cubs will face either San Sebastian or Lyceum in a best-of-three championship. The Staglets remained in the hunt for a finals slot after defeating the twice-to-beat Junior Pirates, 84-75, in the other semis pairing.The scores:LETRAN 85—Balanza 15, Batiller 14, Mina 12, Muyang 11, Ular 10, Yu 10, Caralipio 9, Balagasay 4, Ambohot 0, Olivario 0, Reyson 0, Sangalang 0, Javillonar 0.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES View comments
No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist Already assured of a semifinal slot after their hot 3-0 start, the Nationals settled for the second spot in the preliminaries.The Thais, who the Filipinos beat for in the 2017 gold medal match, went on to convert four more in the middle period.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4Philippines’ lone goal make came from Carlo Martin Tenedero, who scored in the sixth minute of the second frame.The Eagles crank their title-retention bid up when they play Singapore, a team they beat 5-3 in the group phase, when the knockout stage gets going this Saturday. Taal Volcano’s lava fountain weakens, but Phivolcs says it’s not sign of slowing down View comments ‘People evacuated on their own’ The Philippines’ Rigel Lancero II battle Thailand’s Patrick Forstner for the puck during the Ice Hockey preliminary round of the 30th South East Asian Games 2019. INQUIRER PHOTO/ Sherwin VardeleonMANILA, Philippines–The Philippines fell to Thailand, 10-1, for its first loss in the ice hockey tournament of 30th Southeast Asian Games Friday night at SM Mall of Asia ice skating rink.The Eagles found themselves trailing early, 0-3, after an early barrage led by Papan Thanakroekkiat six minutes into the contest.ADVERTISEMENT NFA assures ample rice supply in ashfall, eruption-affected areas Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:11SEA GAMES 2019: PH’s Nesthy Petecio boxing featherweight final (HIGHLIGHTS)08:07Athletes treated to a spectacle as SEA Games 2019 officially ends06:27SEA Games 2019: No surprises as Gilas Pilipinas cruises to basketball gold05:02SEA Games 2019: Philippines clinches historic gold in women’s basketball05:21Drama in karate: Tsukii ‘very sad’ over coach’s bullying, cold shoulder03:24PH’s James Palicte boxing light welterweight final (HIGHLIGHTS) LATEST STORIES Thailand faces Malaysia in the other semifinal pairing which comes off wraps at 3 p.m.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next MOST READ Microsoft ends free Windows 7 security updates on Tuesday Leonardo DiCaprio, Taika Waititi, other stars react to Oscar nominations Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. SEA Games: PH wins another silver as Singapore, Vietnam rule swimming Thailand reports case of coronavirus from China
This is a continuation from the contentions put forward last week on this subject matter. On the other suggestion put forward, the one having to do with farming, opportunities exist in the supply of fruits etc., and indeed those are good initiatives; but as far as this author is aware (and I stand corrected), no lands were transferred to the ownership of these workers, as was promised to them, to get into farming of other crops. This notwithstanding, while the idea sounds ambitious, in practice there are some completely different peculiarities altogether.Again, hypothetically, if a few thousands of these people do get into farming, who will they sell to? The process to convert cane lands into alternative agricultural lands would attract a financial cost which sugar workers and farmers would certainly not be able to bear. Consideration must be given to what other crops will be planted. There is excessive production of the common provisions and cash crops, and lack of export market for these produce is another concern.In addition, without value-added mechanisms in place, excessive production would ultimately lead to wastage and depressed pricing.There is also the other initiative of training with new skills, such as carpentry, plumbing, and so on; as the sacked workers themselves said – speaking to the press not too long ago – how much work will they get as carpenters, and how often? Most of the homes already have plumbing. Ironically, too, the administration of the day has squashed the housing drive that was pioneered under the previous administration, which had seen thousands of homes being built and the development of huge housing schemes and other such like developments across the country – a time when there was virtually a housing or construction boom.So it is very ironic that there is no substantive policy to fuel a construction boom in which carpenters and other tradesmen could have a steady flow of work, and ultimately income to support their livelihoods.In the most basic sense, demand side policies versus supply side policies in the context of GuySuCo’s fiasco is such that, in order for there to be sustained and increasing demand for goods and services in an economy, the consumers need to have the spending power. More disposable income drives a demand which in turn propels economic growth.On the supply side of things, if people don’t have the spending power, how will businesses get sales? Sales will fall, which could also lead to unemployment. If someone decides to invest $500,000 into a business, selling clothing or any other commodity or venture, if people don’t have money to spend and support that business/investment, then it will simply fail.That being said, advising the sacked sugar workers to take their severance and invest in a business is totally nonsensical. Who will buy? Who have the power to buy?This author understands that the sugar workers were also advised to invest in stocks; meaning, shares in companies on the local stock exchange. Again, this is hilarious. If one were to invest one million dollars in shares, first of all, companies are not necessarily obligated to pay dividends; that depends on the financial state and strategic plans of the company; and return on that would be very minimal or insignificant, bearing in mind that dividends are paid only once or twice a year. People invest in those kinds of investments only when they have excess cash or liquidity. This means that they have a steady flow of monthly income to maintain their normal lifestyles, pay their bills, travel, go on a vacation, party, have properties and vehicles, enjoy a good quality of life, could afford to send their children to school and university, and still have excess cash; which would more or less be in a savings account.It is those savings – referred to as excess cash – that are usually invested in company shares and other financial instruments in the financial markets.And last, but not least, this retrenchment will cost the economy approximately $10 billion in income distribution annually, which in turn is utilised for consumer spending. Consumer spending fuels economic growth; sustains the livelihoods of businesses, such as retailers, the fisher man, the taxi driver, hire car drivers, minibus operators, the vendors on the streets, the village shops, and the wider retail and distribution sector, in addition to spending in their own village economies; and the list goes on.And this is how approximately 40,000 plus dependents are affected adversely in ways that will have far-reaching implications for the economy. Unemployment will increase, poverty will be on the rise, and social and economic hardships will be activated for a wide cross-section of the Guyanese people, and by extension the economy.
…doodyIn Guyana, there’s an old, if earthy, saying that pithily summarises what’s going on today in our dear old mudland: “Takin’ yuh doody and daubin’ it pon yuh mattie backside!” How else can you describe the PNC saying that for not returning to the National Assembly and agreeing to an extension of time for elections, the PPP’s breaching the Constitution!!Yep!! That’s what they said…and you can read all about it in Nagamootoo’s column and editorial in the Chronic. One wonders if this version of “33 not the majority of 65” originated with him. After all, he keeps insisting he’s a fiction writer – and even put his efforts in the same sentence mentioning the departure of the great Toni Morrison!!Does he think this will get him the nod over Ramjattan as the PM footstool for the PNC in the next elections?But what about his reaction right after the passage of the no-confidence motion back in Dec 21 2018? Didn’t he say his government would have to resign within three months to comply with Art 106 (6)? Didn’t he say, “Guyanese must understand that the democratic process is sometimes unpredictable. You may have results that are not planned for…but the outcome has to be accepted… It may be a surprise to some, it may be a shock to others; it may be welcomed by some, and others may rejoice over the results, but that is how democracy works, and we are fully committed to the rule of law”?Didn’t he plead, “We want our people to maintain the peace, the good order, the stability of our country. We want nothing to happen in our society that will affect the stability and peace, and we want nothing to happen that will affect the business community in this particular period that you have bright business”? And now he’s demanding that it’s the PPP’s duty to return to Parliament and extend the time Government has already stolen? Even though the society is tense and business sucks?So how’d they arrive at this oxymoron?? The PNC and Nagamootoo insist that Art 106 (6) and 106 (7) must be read together. Okay so far. But where they veer off into la-la land is when they insist that the observation in Art 106 (7), that the 3 months’ deadline of 106 (6) CAN be extended by a two-thirds majority vote, places a DUTY on the PPP to lend them their votes to get that majority!!So they breach their Constitutional obligations by remaining in office beyond the allowed 3 months, and the PPP’s in breach if they don’t go along??Is Nagamootoo back to imbibing bush rum from Whim??…with the race brushThe PNC machinery is in high gear, daubing this newspaper with the race brush because it cited concerns that the Haitians pouring through Guyana might pose health risks. The Chronic reported NY Caribbean-descended lawmakers that such was the case.But what’s so “racist” about raising these concernsWhen, according to SN, “Mabaruma Mayor Henry Smith yesterday warned that a health crisis may be looming in Region One, given the large number of Venezuelans who are illegally crossing the border”?? Was he being racist?? When the PNC-appointed REO seconded this stance, was he being racist?? Or is it that “racism” is okay if it’s against Venezuelan Amerindians?The Ministry of Health agreed that these Haitian health concerns were “reasonable”. Were they racist??On the concerns about cholera…doesn’t the bacteria survive in the infected for long periods?? Couldn’t they be transmitted to others who use overcrowded toilet facilities in the hotel rooms they’re herded into? Is it unreasonable that, apart from demanding cash, sex might be demanded from AIDS infected Haitian women?The race card is being used to muzzle valid concerns.…the victimsThe Chronic also ran a human-interest piece about residents of Buxton reflecting on the killings and mayhem in their village. One called for a “COI” into the events – as did Jagdeo.So why’s the PNC refusing?
…el CommandanteIt’s a supreme irony that Fidel Castro, the man who for over fifty years rejected bourgeois values, died on US “Black Friday” – a day epitomising the capitalist drive to squeeze the last penny from the workers through fetishizing bourgeois consumerism. But then the irony was probably lost when American designers from the sixties onwards made Castro’s “anti-bourgeois” military fatigues into a chic fashion statement. Banana Republic, anyone?Castro was one of the last real “revolutionaries”. Not just a revolutionary to overthrow a repressive government – even though that’s nothing to scoff at. Not just a revolutionary to bring poor Cubans of African descent into the cities and install them into the posh homes of the departed ruling strata who’d departed to Florida…and helped to break the racial segregation that’d prevailed up to then.Not just a revolutionary who insisted education must be available all the way to university and medical schools – absolutely free. And ditto on free medical care to one and all. Not just a revolutionary to remove the exclusivism and elitism from medical schools to train and export doctors to all Latin America and Africa. Not just a revolutionary who insisted all jobs are of equal dignity and workers must be paid so as not to create class differences.No. Castro was a revolutionary who believed that there could be a total transformation of the human psyche so that folks would be able to accept the egalitarianism he insisted was necessary for a just society. From each according to his ability; to each according to his needs. And we know in this he failed – because so many Cubans are just raring to enjoy the spoils of the consumer society and the inequalities that go with it – even though by all the measures mentioned above, Cuba’s done better than any other society in the Caribbean.But Castro really “failed” because of two factors. First there was the economic embargo imposed since 1960 and is still in place. Who can predict where Cuba would’ve been today if it could import spare parts for its industrial base during those fifty+ years? Then there’s the TV programmes from the US that’s beamed into Cuba which flaunts the “good life” in that society. Who supports Castro to mention the US and the “developed world” are able to enjoy that sybaritic lifestyle because of their historic exploitation of the Third World?Most commentators predict that with the passing of Fidel and then of his brother Raul, the new generation of Cuban leaders will go the way of China and graft a capitalist economy onto a socialist society.But Castro must be saluted for fighting the good fight.…a principled stanceYou gotta hand it to Juan Edgehill for sticking to his guns in the obvious attempt to bully him into submission in Parliament. Here it is… over a year ago he calculated the Guyanese tax payers would be set back a Billion dollars over the government’s 5-year term to deal with the 50% salary increase the Cabinet awarded itself.And for the third time he refused to bow and scrape when he was convinced he was right. Now in the latest meeting of the Parliamentary Privileges Committee – which is being used like the Spanish Inquisition on him, Edgehill produced the figures to back-up his assertion. And the Committee, headed by Speaker Bartland Scotland, were struck dumb! They now say they have to “consider” Edgehill’s submission.But one has to ask why the persecution of Edgehill? Was he correct when he asserted that African-Guyanese who join the PPP get singled out more for “condign” treatment?The PNC-led coalition Government couldn’t possibly be that racist, could they?…the printer’s devil?The Chronic reported that Prezzie called for a return of the glory days when Linden produced Aluminium. Surely Prezzie didn’t say that, did he? Linden produced ALUMINA and not aluminum.Must be that pesky printer’s devil again!!
Emancipation Day celebrations presented the opportunity for various leaders to reflect on the origins and nature of our society. The general consensus appeared to be that the waves of people brought in as slaves and then as indentured labourers created a “land of six peoples”.But, more accurately, what was created was a “land of six ethnicities”. The latter is the categorisation of a social group based on a common descent and common cultural practices.Guyana demonstrates an unappreciated feature of ethnicity: if examined historically, it would be discerned that ethnic groups are not immutable; and, in fact, they can, in many ways, be contextual. Those who are today labelled “Africans” were brought as slaves from various tribes originating from all across West Africa, and originally practised quite divergent cultural forms. Indians also have gone beyond regional (North and South India) caste (all the four castes and “outcastes” were brought in roughly the same proportion as in North India) and religious (Hindu, Muslim and Christian) cleavages to regard themselves, by and large, as a single ethnic group.This process of ethnic consciousness was facilitated by a number of factors acting over the course of time. Firstly, from the beginning of the colonisation of Guyana, ethnicity was a crucial variable: all of the colonisers were white Western Europeans, and all the oppressed were from other geographical areas and anthropological cultures. The oppression was separated in space or time, which initially precluded extensive bonding of groups from different lands. The Amerindians, who were also from many tribes, were deemed unfit for plantation labour, and were allowed to remain in the hinterland.After the African slaves were freed in 1838, they decamped the plantations en masse, with only the mostly skilled factory workers remaining, never having much intercourse with the indentures, especially Indians, who replaced them. The smaller numbers of Portuguese and Chinese also soon found separate occupational niches, but were concentrated in the urban areas, and interacted much more with the Africans, who had also gravitated there. It is apposite to note that the British Whites did not include the Portuguese, who had been brought from the island of Madeira, in their definition of “European”. Portuguese thus are considered a separate ethnic group in Guyana from “Europeans”.However, even though ethnic groups can be created, and are not immutable, there are several features that militate against their disappearance in the modern world. Firstly, the state has become such a dominant feature of society in the allocation of rewards, economic and otherwise, that it is seen as the greatest prize to be captured. Whether peacefully or not, this capture can only be accomplished by the mobilisation of people; thus any grouping, potential or existent, will be galvanised by observant and ambitious politicians. The ethnic group is the most salient such grouping, as we are witnessing even in the developed world, where “white” is now an ethnic category.But simultaneously, “self-determination of peoples” has become such an accepted international norm since WWI that it is almost impossible to coerce supposedly backward subaltern ethnic groups into abandoning their cultures, as was possible before. Then there is the even more pervasive international norm of “equality”, to which everyone now aspires and which no one is willing to be accused of denying. Frequently, and certainly not fortuitously, in the development of the present state-system, different ethnic groups ended up in unequal positions – whether it is economic, social or political equality. Since the ethnic group in the seat of power would tend to support the status quo, the underdog groups are forced to mobilise qua ethnic groups. Ethnicity thus can become a strategic necessity to secure justice by attempting to rectify unequal power relations.Lastly, the ethnic group, being based on culture and origins, is tied up with the individual’s conception of “self”. An individual’s personality or self is a construction and almost a reflection of his social world. His perception of the worth of his group, to a marked degree, shapes the self-esteem of the individual.
Dear Editor,I am writing this letter as a concerned observer to the current situation in Guyana involving the newly introduced biodegradable containers and their former counterparts – the Styrofoam containers. The deterioration time of such container is approximately two months to fully decompose minimising the amount of garbage in our country, as opposed to Styrofoam containers that do not decompose naturally in the environment, as they are essentially plastic. Normal plastic takes hundreds of years to decompose and Styrofoam, being a stronger form of plastic, will take much longer or not decompose at all in the natural environment.However, it has come to my concern that food vendors, restaurants, bars, etc, (especially in Region Six), continue to use the more inefficient Styrofoam containers that are now illegal in Guyana. Styrofoam containers are being entered illegally into Guyana through the Suriname-Guyana route.Restaurant owners will continue to say that the old Styrofoam containers are “old stock being used” because they will continue to benefit from the lower prices of the Styrofoam containers as well as the advantage of the containers being void of all taxes.When all is said and done, the Government is robbed of revenue, garbage will continue to accumulate causing blockages in our drainage systems, and our landscape will be ruined by these unlawful tax evaders that are unwilling to commit to the Government’s green policy.The relevant authorities need to step in and do something before the problem continues to grow right under our noses. Policy is policy. The Government had given adequate time for all sellers with need for food boxes to put systems in place, so that there would be no more need for Styrofoam containers in Guyana. If the Government is to enact a policy such as this one, banning Styrofoam containers from Guyana, then they need to make sure that Styrofoam containers are no longer used in our economy.As citizens, we also need to do our part to protect the landscape and waterways of our country so we would like to know, should we be sold something in a Styrofoam container or if we see items being sold in a Styrofoam container, whom can we inform? What authority would be involved in enforcing our country’s policy?With respect,Concerned citizen