The PPP / C is deaf
Kaieteur News- The rapid spike in COVID-19 deaths clearly suggests that the high number of daily new cases (which average almost 100 per day) is not meant to excite numbers. Although it is necessary to conduct an examination between the Ministry numbers and the laboratory test results, it is most likely that there is no misrepresentation.
The increase in cases has led to calls for the closure of at least the regions recording the highest number of new cases – Three, Four and Seven. But the government is not likely to hear any calls for a limited and even targeted lock-down.
The private sector would not allow the government to do so. The PPP / C is chained to the business class and as far as that class is concerned, their lockdown will seriously affect their business interests – the need to make money – and so they will not demand any such restrictions from the government. .
The government’s benefit is to protect the economy. And if the private sector comes forward tomorrow and tells the government the need to shut down, the government would be under pressure to resist.
It is the views of the private sector that matter. Not the workers or civil society. These latter two constituencies can plead for tighter restrictions. These pleas fall on deaf ears because the government’s most important opinion is that of the private sector.
The representative body for teachers was concerned about partial reopening of schools. Those concerns were ignored as classes resumed for three grade levels.
The rest of the trade union movement does not tend to call for restrictions to be imposed. They appreciate the difficulties experienced by workers during the five-month period when there was little going on in the country because of the pandemic and the turmoil of elections. The APNU + AFC had nothing to offer those affected. Many workers were made redundant and others were forced to suffer because of non-essential business closures.
Given the government’s sympathy with the business class and the experience from March to August 2020, the PPP / C is not going to return to a state where non-essential businesses are being asked to close their doors, employees given the option from working at home or on rotation and to extending curfew hours. This is not going to happen and so it is a waste of time pleading for additional social restrictions.
The PPP / C continues to blame citizens. He forgets that the government’s role is to act to protect citizens. He wants citizens to be more responsible. But responsible government would have taken steps to protect its citizens from the irresponsible elements.
The government had to have known the consequences when full steam moved forward with the reopening of the economy after August. He had to have figured out, based on evidence from around the world that this would have led to more cases and more deaths. The government itself has said it has a delicate balancing act of saving lives while trying to avoid economic meltdown.
It is clear now that this government’s strategy has failed and has failed because enforcement has been poor and testing has not reached the desired levels. The number of new daily outbreaks now suggests that the virus is running rampant throughout society and the country will definitely see hundreds more deaths before this pandemic is over.
Given Guyana’s death rate, a good guideline is that for every 40 new cases reported, one person is going to die. And over the past week, there have been hundreds of new cases.
The government is urging people to get vaccinated. But the evidence from around the world is mixed. Israel and the United Kingdom have seen a steep decline in vaccination deaths. But in the United States, although deaths have dropped significantly, more than 800 people are still dying each day and infection rates are very high despite almost one-third of the population receiving at least one dose of ‘ r vaccine.
The lesson in all of this is that vaccination is not money in itself. Had the United Kingdom not installed locks, its vaccination campaign would not have been effective as it was.
But don’t tell that to the pro-business PPP / C. Despite its own claims about the pressure on our hospitals and COVID-19 ICU, the PPP / C remains deaf to the appeal and analysis that clearly suggests it cannot vaccinate on its alone content of the virus.
(The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of this newspaper.)