Based on his observations over his 40 plus years as a politician and economist, APNU+AFC Member and Advisor on Borders, Carl Greenidge, firmly posited that the poor level of dialogue between political parties remains one of the greatest stumbling blocks to good governance in Guyana. During a recent interview on a local radio station, Greenidge said that the crippling offshoot or consequence of this state of affairs is the failure to have better accountability of the political leaders.
In fact, the seasoned politician opined that more robust accountability of political leaders would go a long way to perhaps, attenuating some of the consequences of the sharp racial divide that one observes in Guyana.
In addition to dialogue between the political parties, Greenidge also flagged poor dialogue between political leaders and their party members. Expounding further, he said, ” This is in the sense that we have political parties with a tendency towards ammm, how shall I put it? Let me put it as authoritarianism: a tendency towards saying ‘we have made a decision’ sometimes even worse: ‘I have made a decision’ and everybody is supposed to jump up.”
Greenidge said while this may be fine in certain circumstances, generally speaking, if one wants to take such an approach, it is important that the constituency is properly engaged. In the absence of this, he alluded that strife and chaos can creep in.
Further to this, Greenidge pointed out that the failure of governments to properly deal with their own party members who have engaged in corruption is also damaging to governance and serves to undermine their own standing in the eyes of the public.
In this regard, the official added, “I would also say that if the public finds that the politicians are corrupt; the public has to look at its own attitude towards corruption; where people feel well, maybe it’s justified. You got one section of the society that sees white colour crime as acceptable because nobody loses and another section of the public that regards it as absolutely vile. So, there’s a cultural element to this in which crime, in some measure, is condoned by some elements of our community…”
Greenidge said that indeed, there are many other challenges which affect Guyana’s ability to ensure effective governance but the foregoing he believes are the main problems.