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Processions and the Power of the Police

The announcement today by the Police that an APNU protest action was illegal should come as no surprise to those who have watched governance issues in this country. The last line of the first stanza of the National Anthem describes Guyana as “land of the free’, it is, but with numerous limitations.Today the Police made it clear to the Peaceful Political Protestors (we shall not call them PPP for short) that it will treat any protest with requisite force was evident in its reaction. The Police stated in its release this afternoon that the Guyana Police Force wished to issue another warning that no unlawful march, procession or meeting will be tolerated and that it will deal firmly with any person or persons wishing to breach the peace and disobey the laws.Now this is why the Police can do that according to the laws, made in the legislature, the Police have to give permission for any procession other than a funeral. It is the same legislature than has been effete over the last sixty years because of the majority controlled house.

Guyanese are learning coming out of this latest election, what some persons have been saying for years, that while you may have the rights, those rights are curtailed by various limitations in the Constitution. So for example you do have the right to assembly or freedom of association but that cannot happen here if there is a threat so to speak to the defence, public safety, public order, public morality or public health of the society or if that right to assembly encroaches upon the rights or freedoms of other persons. Those other persons even if they are a Minority hustling to make Money for the Christmas season (like the Private Sector, some of whom, who do not even believe in the Christ of Christmas) must not be affected by your right to assemble, seek redress or protest.

There is only one time every five years in the political meanderings of this nation (or so some feel) that you can make a difference, by casting a ballot for or against the Executive. After that, you are hooligans, miscreants, or thugs if you continue to seek redress for whatever grievances you have. Roll over and take what you get, otherwise you who elected representatives to make the laws, those same representatives, their servants, agents or otherwise, will find you to be unlawful and illegal if you continue to protest.

This is what they have done to me,
Put me in Prison, Hide me away.
Block out the sun, the moon the stars,
And Pray that I die,

But these I laugh at them,
I laugh because I know they cannot kill my thoughts
Or Murder What I write.

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