Monday, March 24, 2014

Court doesn't work...Police doesn't work ....2

So the man whose wife was giving him 'blow' with his good friend found out about it (eventually) and used his wife's cell phone to ensure the 'other man' was home. He drove there with the wife to confront the 'friend' and then shot him 16 times as the guy came to sit in the car-- the wife getting a bullet in her foot.
He then ran away to Surinam while his family found out whether 5 million could sort the problem out. He came back and was charged but after 5 months no witnesses could be found to testify and the case was dropped - yep it's THAT easy folks.

Meanwhile on the Corentyne Coast, the citizens are fearful of bands of aimless young men liming in the street harassing the poor souls who have no choice to work late-- like nurses on a late shift.
This frustrated letter-writer says it all:

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

RotiHut -- stay away from the Biriyani!

When they first opened, the biriyani rice was surprisingly good-- made with Basmati rice and interesting spices.  Now I must confess with the familiarization of the internet and good recipes online I am a fairly good cook and nothing annoys me more to pay good money for shit food-- because when eating it-- I think and KNOW to myself I could do better.

The common problem with 'sharp' Guyanese is they too 'smart' and start cutting corners and the next thing you know the cousin doesn't resemble the original at all. It has been several years since I tasted theirs, but yesterday apparently a dead man's body was found in Mandela Avenue around 5pm as apparently the traffic was backed onto the Cemetery Road. I decided to turn around and while passing decided to give it a try and introduce it to an out-of-town person: I always enjoy introducing something new to hear people's reactions.

Bad mistake, in the first place the "special" was not VAT inclusive -- as were all their prices-- really-- what a cheap marketing trick; you seriously expect people to go around calculating 16% in their heads?
I scrabbled around looking for change to make the limit as I am always short of cash-- (wiser heads suggested that I keep some emergency money to not annoy the choke-and-rob people but I tend to end up spending that too!). Luckily the a Yoga classmate lived nearby and topped me up- to pay for this foul tasting food--  now thinking about it-- would have been better that she wasn't to save me the dreadful experience:

The rice tasted as if it had been frozen and microwaved. The heat was there but the spices not and the chicken tasted like the left overs from the new fried chicken place they opened thrown in. I can't say enough bad things about it -- outrageous at nearly $2000 (U$10) for left-overs!
Guyana going to the dogs.

'Court doesn't work...police doesn't work'

... this from a Brazilian businessman who came, saw business opportunities and for all extents and purposes robbed:

What is sad is that the Courts have been subverted to grant injunctions (for the want of a better word) against itself -- supporting the Businessman on one hand ...then acting against their own orders on the other.  The Police Headquarters not investigating their own branches and the dogs turning against their owners and biting the hand/s that fed them!

So.. far from following the glorious path of capitalism according to Thomas Friedmann in 'The Lexus and Olive Tree': private sector the engine of economic growth.. removing restrictions on foreign investments... increasing exports... opening industries to direct foreign ownership and investment...  it appeared to take a unique Guyanese turn-- whereby the caretaker who was promoted to 'frontman' ( how the heck a Sri Lankan turn up here?) got 'smart' and conned the Brazilians out of their money and used it to finance his own business, stealing their equipment-- no doubt in collusion with the original businessman who owned and leased his land doing nothing with it. 

Clearly the Law and legal system need 'fixing' before this country can progress but there was an interesting letter in yesterday's paper which pointed out:
'the ideal state is a democracy which serves the interests of the citizens in accordance with fair laws, applicable to all citizens, designed to maintain order, peace and liberty. On the other hand a narco-state is a territory taken over by drug interests where government institutions are controlled by drug money and law enforcement agencies serve the interests of narco-traffickers and the corrupted elite.'
Maybe the latter part is applicable: some government institutions serve the interests of the corrupted elite.'?

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Morality and the minister(s)

The apparently spineless Finance Minister found himself in the papers recently as he hit a car into a trench without due care and attention as he was supposed to stop. Perhaps if he hadn't been driving an oversized vehicle unsuited to Guyana's roads there might have been less damages, but there it goes. Like Ted Kennedy-- he removed himself from the scene of the accident without seeing that the other people involved got out of the trench- in this case a taxi with a passenger, and sending a minion to deal with his mess.

This raises several questions in my mind-- I remember reading that the goodly minister had completed a Pandit's training course -- so he should have been aware that the ethical thing to do would be to assist people to whom he had caused harm. ( A Pandit means/implies a learned person able to read and understand the Vedas-- the sacred Hindu texts-- implying some sort of moral leader)  In fact, to back-pedal a bit  he ought not to be even drinking alcohol, much less be driving recklessly, supposedly under the influence ( no breathalyser or blood tests were carried out so there is no evidence!)-- AND according to Kaieteur News-- especially after he had 'jammed' another person's car under similar circumstances only a month previously!
Then as now, a minion had been dispatched to cut a deal, keep it out of public knowledge and quietly drop the matter after ignoring the person's pleas.  Looking very hard for mitigating factors I could only come up with -- it was a Public Holiday so his driver was not working and he was generously driving himself to do the rest of us a favour of not paying another minion 'time and a half', thus having the Country's interest at heart.
(Likewise one could suppose the questionable position of having his wife in the Auditor-General's office to oversee his department's spending of the Public's funds - he could, purely from an altruistic view make sure she had her facts right-- like the Minister of Culture-- a trained Public Health specialist having his wife be in a position of controlling the then cash-cow funds for HIV prevention. I am not saying these are not intelligent women who could not of otherwise have gained these positions on their own steam because let's face it-- Guyana's Parliament has a higher than required number of women parliamentarians on all sides but our peculiar system means they toe the Party line-- and why spoil a good thing of all the perks?  Maybe that's one of the functions of a good Guyanese wife-- clean ya husband dirty laundry?)
I think the Crime Chief indicated that traditionally Ministers are treated differently from ordinary citizens with respect to failing to report the accident within 24hrs or rendering assistance to those injured at the scene of an accident  -- whether this was another genius move from the President who wrote the 1980 constitution giving himself unlimited powers or harkens further back to to Colonial times - it is the same thing -- blatant abuse of Power.
Ironically-- this Minister of Finance's name has been touted as a possible presidential candidate following the stellar performance of the last one.