Dear Editor,
I write in praise of former President and Prime Minister Sam Hinds for that profound essay attacking African leaders who closed their eyes and mouths to rig by the PNC + AFC and or who encouraged Africans to link rigid elections in Guyana between 1965 and 1985 and in 2020. Mr The consistency of Hinds’ character and principle (no relation to the controversial WPA’s Dr David Hinds) is to be emulated, especially by emerging politicians and young leaders.
I also firmly condemn those who tried to recreate the character of this older and respected son of Guyana who served for various periods as Prime Minister and President for nearly 23 years. I spent a lot of time between 1966 and 1992 and again on 2020 battling rigging without looking forward to benefits unlike many others. So I can identify with Sam.
The international community, diplomats in Guyana, and local and international observers condemned the attempted election last March 2 and described the efforts as a transparent attempt to publicly rig the 2020 elections, including a rigged 1978 referendum by the PNC. Forbes Burnham, Desmond Hoyte, and other PNC leaders presided and directed rig elections in Guyana. One does not forget the speech in Atlanta by David Granger about whether the coalition should return to rigging to stay in office. Yours truly and bravely, Sam Hinds took African leaders to task. Sam is a man of integrity and decency, as he is popularly known. Unlike most other African leaders, he could not bring himself to close his eyes or support electoral fraud for the PNC to remain in government. He could not bring himself to support those who view Indians and other ethnic groups in multicultural Guyana as enemies who must be held down and denied power through electoral fraud. Key Africans in the electoral machinery were instructed to rig the election to keep the PNC in office. Sam could not support such surgery. It welcomes equality and respect for the law and the will of voters. He could not bring himself to support those who tried to keep Indians and other ethnic groups in multicultural Guyana out of power and as enemies who must be kept down. What if the leaders of Indians and other ethnic groups had instructed their people to engage in electoral fraud?
Clearly, Sam endorses the words of wisdom uttered by the African academic Dr. Chuba Okakigbo noted: “If you are emotionally attached to your tribe or politics leaning to the point that truth and justice become secondary considerations, then your education is worthless. Your exposure is useless. If you cannot reason beyond minor feelings, you are liable to mankind ”. Many leaders are accountable to the country and its race.
Unlike what one Afro-Guyanese racist wrote depicting Sam Hinds, Sam served his race and other ethnic groups with distinction. It was not racist. While he was Prime Minister, he had responsibility for energy, among other departments. He made sure Linden continued to receive uninterrupted free electricity when the rest of the nation was suffering from blackouts. Also, like Lindener, he played a vital role in salvaging the boxer industry that was earlier closed by the PNC. He promoted and distributed to bauxite workers more than their union leaders; Bauxite workers benefited tremendously under PPP.
Moses Nagamootoo who was the Minister of Information in the PPP administration of the 19990s, praised Sam for his leadership. In the PPP government, unlike his successor Naagamootoo in the coalition, Prime Minister Sam Hinds was integral to the central decision-making process. The PPP government listened to its views and adopted its recommendations unlike Nagamootoo which was ignored by the PNC leadership during the coalition.
Sam was a PPP government leader, a leadership who worked together to implement manifesto pledges.
Professor Clive Thomas noted that Africans are better off under the PPP than under the PNC in economic indicators. Their standard of living dropped significantly under the PNC, Africa’s standard of living being the most improved among all ethnic groups under the PPP. Sam Hinds was part of that effort. Some of the main achievements of the PPP government included a stunning drop in mortgage rates and restoring the country’s economic viability after two consecutive decades of negative growth. The record would show that, under the PPP, about 100,000 housing lots were distributed, with a significant amount being donated to Africa. Many houses were built and fairly distributed among all groups, including Africa. In his last seven years in office, 2007-2014, Sam was part of the team that led the country to seven consecutive years of economic growth. The IMF report on Guyana said average real GDP growth was 4.5% annually for that period. Africa benefited from that growth just like other groups.
The entire country’s infrastructure benefited under PPP; Linden accepted a new way after 1992. Africa has many more achievements with Sam’s leadership; no need to document everything.
No African leader has done more than Sam Hinds for the All Blacks after 1992. And the achievements were from a government that ruled for every race. Burnham and Granger and other PNC leaders governed solely for the benefit of their race. Sam Hinds’ governance was inclusive; it was for every race. There is no other African leader, after 1992, who has done more for Africa, as well as other races, than Sam Hinds. This is why he is respected and respected by all races. Its poll numbers have soared. He did not see things in terms of race but humanity.

Bisram Vishnu

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