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Houston Estates, Carl Greeenidge’s book and the African Guyanese tragedy – Kaieteur News
** “Empowering a Peasantry in a Caribbean Context: The Case of Land Settlement Schemes in Guyana, 1865-1985 by Carl Greenidge”.

This book argues a case whereby freed slaves who worked the lands of Guyana and made Guyana viable were terribly and deliberately discriminated against in their quest to build a landed economy for themselves......Looking back at the ownership of land by many rich families and situating land ownership in the historical context of what Adamson and Greenidge wrote, you see the glaring historical wrongs done to African Guyanese.
African_Guyanese_villages  Afro-Guyanese  books  Freddie_Kissoon  generational_wealth  history  land_ownership  oligarchs  slavery  sugar 
10 weeks ago by jerryking
The APNU+AFC Govt. and African Guyanese: After three years, no major Policy Initiative that targets Black Empowerment – Kaieteur News
May 13, 2018 | | Hinds' Sight with Dr. David Hinds.

Many African Guyanese believe that any criticism of this APNU+AFC government, especially by one of their own, is sinful. This is the very attitude that was exhibited by many Indian Guyanese when the PPP held office and which African Guyanese found revolting. But now, with their government in power, African Guyanese are behaving in the same manner. This hypocrisy by our ethnic communities is at the root of Guyana’s failure to move from the backward politics of colonial domination to a more enlightened politics that embrace equality of opportunity and national consensus as guiding principles. And this failure has impeded economic liberation from poverty and want, and kept us a poor, underdeveloped country.......Most African Guyanese live in the urban areas and in ancestral villages. But these spaces are hardly hubs of economic opportunities. Three years after its assumption of office, there is still no comprehensive Urban and Village renewal initiative. Many African Guyanese villages and communities don’t have markets, for example. Hence, there is little money circulation in those communities.
I know there are many who would say that Village and Urban Renewal are not government business. I beg to disagree. The poor state of those communities is a direct result of government policies, so the repair job must be initiated by government policy.
Afro-Guyanese  African_Guyanese_villages  David_Hinds  disempowerment  economic_empowerment  economic_development  economic_dynamism  economically_disadvantaged  equality_of_opportunity  ethnic_communities  Guyana  Guyanese  institutions  politics  revitalization 
may 2018 by jerryking
Sir Wilson Harris obituary | Books
Fri 9 Mar 2018 | The Guardian | Michael Mitchell

16.13 GMT Last modified on Sun 11 Mar 2018 11.28 GMT
obituaries  Guyanese  Guyana  Afro-Guyanese  writers  authors  Wilson_Harris 
march 2018 by jerryking
Engineer Extraordinaire, Charles Ceres, is a ‘Special Person’
Oct 30, 2016 | Kaieteur News | By Sharmain Grainger.

“I want people to remember Charles Ceres the person, not what profession I was in. Whatever I have acquired hasn’t changed me. The difference between me and a lot of people is that I know the difference between who I am and what I do…what I do is not who I am.”
Queen’s  alumni  engineering  humility  Afro-Guyanese  management_consulting  entrepreneur  entrepreneurship 
october 2016 by jerryking
Wealth transforms and strengthens one’s position in the political process -
November 19, 2009 | Stabroek News| F. Skinner

My theory is to train our people to be able to develop themselves regardless of the party in power. I noted that even after 28 years of PNC rule, generally, our social development did not show positive trends. Dr Jagan warned about the danger of our dependence on government jobs. My brand of social activism is about changing a mindset, which is amplified by some responses to my last letter.
Cheddi_Jagan  letters_to_the_editor  entrepreneurship  Afro-Guyanese  Guyanese  wealth_creation  generational_wealth 
june 2016 by jerryking
Africans were pioneers in business in Guyana
January 12, 2010 | Stabroek News | F. Skinner.

Africans are the pioneers of the majority of business trends and innovations in Guyana, but there is hardly any tangible proof of this. Their ideas were worked and developed only to change hands with no royalties attached. ...Mr King identified many problems/obstacles facing the African businessman. He pointed out that if an Indian is a barber his son and even grandson are destined to be barbers. Next, the lack of other rich African businessmen to turn to for support – financial or business advice – when the banks and your competitors gang up against you.....He discussed the proposition with his closest friends and was asked, “What you gon do wid all that property?” He admitted that it was not that his friends were deliberately giving him bad advice, it was that they simply did not know and he was no different. He regretted the missed opportunity because a few years later one year’s rental of a small section on the ground floor would have paid for the entire property at the time....They ran into financial problems and got some assistance from the government, which was not enough. Which African organization could they have turned to for financial assistance? The same can be said about another three who had the stone quarry....All the persons mentioned were out there with their shoulders to the wheel. There are reasons for their failures. We must identify these reasons and address them as a community. Glaring though is the lack of a support system in the community.
We must accept that we must generate wealth and not just depend on education, a salaried job or a government. We must be able to be trustworthy to each other. We must stop this individualist approach to business. One ‘pointer’ can’t sweep. Our foreparents trusted each other enough to form co-ops and bought land.
Afro-Guyanese  small_business  history  '70s  entrepreneurship  letters_to_the_editor  Guyanese  trailblazers  trustworthiness  advice  pioneers  missed_opportunities  regrets  support_systems  challenges  wealth_creation  failure  post-mortems  disunity 
june 2016 by jerryking
Granger addressed a matter of importance to all Guyanese - Stabroek News
By
Staff Writer
August 12, 2015

Pesident Granger’s position at the forum: “salaried employment is very seductive … You can spend out your whole salary because you know next month you will get another salary. If you are a farmer you need to save money for fertilizer, seed, equipment, if there is a drought or a flood you need savings to tide you over but if you are a policeman and there’s a flood you still get paid. Some people do not like to take risks but …unless you change the economy, unless we create people who are entrepreneurs, manufacturers, we will always be victims of people who make decisions for us.”
Afro-Guyanese  cultural_values  David_Granger  economic_development  Guyana  Guyanese  entrepreneurship  Indo-Guyanese  manufacturers  psyche_of_dependency  risk-taking 
august 2015 by jerryking
The PNC when in power did not amend the constitution to protect African Guyanese should it ever lose office - - Georgetown, Guyana
JUNE 25, 2011 | Stabroek News | M. Maxwell.

"Political power in this country is a zero-sum game thanks to the PNC and more pointedly to Forbes Burnham, who replaced a good (not great, but good) constitution with a monstrosity in 1980. ....The PNC had sufficient opportunity from at least 1985 with his demise to before the election of 1992 to implement constitutional and institutional reform that would protect African Guyanese and other minorities in the future following free and fair elections where ethnic voting would put the heavily Indian-supported PPP into power for a long time. ....However, the PNC failed African Guyanese in particular and Guyanese in general. A great opportunity to rewrite the constitution to benefit the minorities of this country of minorities was missed. The presidency continues to destroy this nation. ...Instead of beneficial change to protect its constituency and the Guyanese public in general, some charlatans who sat atop the PNC heap in 1992 ran for the hills leaving the African masses with no constitutional or institutional protection against exactly what they complain of today. It was a classic act of the shallow thinking, missing foresight and ineptitude
Afro-Guyanese  constituencies  constitutions  Guyana  failure  foresight  history  ineptitude  letters_to_the_editor  LFSB  minorities  minority_rights  PNC  zero-sum_games 
september 2014 by jerryking
If enough African-Guyanese return to their capitalist roots Guyana’s economic future will see improvement Georgetown, Guyana
JANUARY 8, 2010 |- Stabroek News | Michael Maxwell.

The question is whether the state or the individual/community bears primary responsibility for wealth creation with focus on the African-Guyanese populace. Unquestionably, both the state and the individual are responsible for facilitating the creation and pursuit of legitimate wealth. ...Orientation to wealth creation in the African-Guyanese community is presently stymied by several factors, most notably a poor personal saving rate, low investment rate, business risk aversion, low communal wealth generation endeavours and high public sector and service sector participation rate. ...A bigger problem for African-Guyanese capitalism and entrepreneurism is its lack of support from its own group. African-Guyanese businessmen and the community must lead the charge in educating African-Guyanese about the benefits of personal and commercial wealth generation......The greatest form of empowerment is economic empowerment, and dramatically so for a poor people in a poor nation. That is the true measure of freedom. Without a strong African-Guyanese capitalist class in Guyana alongside the Indian-Guyanese capitalist class the nation cannot achieve a decent path of economic progress. Wealth creation is not an alien concept to African-Guyanese who were the first independent producers in Guyana after slavery before becoming a mostly entrenched consumer and service providing class to the primary capitalists.
Afro-Guyanese  wealth_creation  capitalism  letters_to_the_editor  economic_development  Guyana  self-determination  self-discipline  self-employment  self-help  support_systems  generational_wealth  individual_initiative  economic_empowerment  risk-aversion  public_sector  distrust  disunity 
september 2014 by jerryking
No one is prepared to make the obvious connection between our cultural morass and the crime, corruption and violence that plague us - Stabroek News - Georgetown, Guyana
Ryhaan Shah

This exchange of letters has confirmed that it is the culture of the underclass that is now the definitive culture of Guyana and, further, that this culture is so very much admired at all levels of our society that any criticism if its crudities results in condemnation from everyone. We celebrate that culture, delight in it, and, as Skinner does, we rationalize it. Had he not stated it in his letter, who would ever have thought that it is an African Guyanese trait that they big up themselves by presenting themselves as murderers?

The wider issue is that no one is prepared to make the obvious connection that exists between our cultural morass and the crime, corruption and violence, including the violence against women and children that plague our society.

It is commendable that SN columnist Dave Martins finds the societal ills described in Bhattacharya’s book fixable. I have long since given up on any such hope and Mr Skinner’s letter reminds me of why I am so sure of that hopelessness.
letters_to_the_editor  novels  fiction  books  Guyana  cultural_values  Dave_Martins  underclass  Afro-Guyanese  hopelessness 
september 2014 by jerryking
Lives Lived: Muriel Jean Collins, 80 - The Globe and Mail
JEFF ROSE

Contributed to The Globe and Mail

Published Friday, Apr. 04 2014
unions  Afro-Guyanese  obituaries  women 
april 2014 by jerryking
Lives Lived: Clarence Anthony Nichols, 70 - The Globe and Mail
The Nichols family

Contributed to The Globe and Mail

Published Friday, Jan. 31 2014
obituaries  Guyanese  African_Canadians  Afro-Guyanese 
february 2014 by jerryking
African Guyanese leaders must be much more development oriented
November 20, 2007 | Stabroek News | by Lin-Jay Harry-Voglezon.

Cheddi Jagan said around 1990, that the PNC government was preparing the Afro community to fail. He meant the high concentration of Afro Guyanese in the bloated public service sector which was unsustainable, and the practice of giving them opportunities on the basis of party cards, as a way of up-keeping the government, would backfire on the community. He meant that when the system of things changed the community would be uncompetitive for it would by then have nurtured the wrong ethics, expectations, and attitudes. The psyche of dependency on the state would be so ingrained that it would fail to be as resourceful as it is ought to be and was capable of being........I have argued in the past that the Afro community, owing to its historical conditions of survival, had crystallised a false sense of importance and security under PNC governance. I indicated that it is not a government of black faces, PNC or otherwise that would transform the Afro communities, but transformation in cultural ideas and economic groundings, which could be induced through changed conditions of survival and an improved understanding of self. Of all Afro leaders, Walter Rodney was best trained and equipped to lead that transformation. His death was a tremendous loss.

This additional response to Osafo Modibo’s letters is that the problems at Buxton are fundamentally symptomatic of cultural and economic deficiencies. While Modibo accuses myself and others of being silent on the extremities in that village he fails to acknowledge that the very executors of the excesses are mainly Afro Guyanese. The Afro community should realise that the highest form of emancipation would be when every black child grows up with the doctrine that he must be black, honourable and economically creative. So whether he is poor, rich, or an officer of state he must never pawn his common sense and dignity to others.
uncompetitive  letters_to_the_editor  economic_development  Afro-Guyanese  ethnic_communities  entrepreneurship  mindsets  generational_wealth  public_sector  psyche_of_dependency  human_psyche  Cheddi_Jagan  cultural_values  false_sense_of_security 
september 2013 by jerryking
African-Guyanese need to invest time and resources in agriculture
May 19, 2011 | Stabroek News | by Richard Drake.

I believe that what black communities lack the most is money and wealth. A causal observation of any black community will reveal that the stranglehold of poverty is affecting their growth and development. The high number of dilapidated buildings, poor roads, water and sanitation are manifest expressions of that poverty. There are a number of reasons for this I shall discuss two.

First, our attitude towards money is bad. Look at the way we spend our hard-earned money in entertainment. Almost every show at the Providence Stadium is filled to capacity with young and not so young African-Guyanese. Every show young Blacks spend thousands of dollars they can hardly afford. We entertain ourselves at the expense of everything else, even our development.

Second, a large percentage of African-Guyanese work in the public sector; they are public servants. The government controls the public purse. Therefore, it decides how much these servants will be paid and how much they should be taxed. In this way, they do exert a great deal of power over the development of Blacks and influence the quality of their lives and communities.

One can argue that there are trade unions which negotiate with government, wages and salaries for workers. However, given the behaviour of the unions demonstrated at the last May Day rally, the divisions among them, and the fact that some of their leaders appear to have been bought out by the government one can hardly expect a decent challenge by these organizations to the unfairness in the national pay system.

As a result, the average public servant lives from pay cheque to pay cheque. It is a vicious cycle.

What is clear is that African-Guyanese desperately need a paradigm shift. African-Guyanese must get out of the public sector now. We need to begin to ‘re-image’ ourselves not as servants (public or otherwise) but as entrepreneurs. This is absolutely necessary for wealth creation and development.

One area that is immediately available to us is agriculture. There is a lot of history in the black community in this industry and much aversion to it, particularly by our young people but, there is enormous potential in this industry. Export markets are available for all kinds of non-traditional produce. However, we are too busy sitting behind desks burdened with loads of paperwork that we cannot see and exploit the potential in this sector. We love the sound of the names and status of certain positions in the public sector. Some of those very positions retard our growth and progress. We have to change that.

As a people, we need to invest time and resources in the agriculture industry; we need to go back to the land en masse. Black families and communities must become efficient economic units, generating wealth for real development through large-scale crop and animal husbandry. This will make us self employed, reduce the amount we spend in purchasing food, decrease our dependence on others to supply us with food and free up money for other investment activities. It will help in wealth generation in black communities.
Guyana  letters_to_the_editor  Afro-Guyanese  agriculture  wealth_creation  ethnic_communities  economic_development  entrepreneurship  mindsets  public_sector  overrepresentation  farming  fresh_produce  non-traditional  generational_wealth  self-employment  frugality  downward_spirals  poverty  public_servants  paradigm_shifts  African_Guyanese_villages  young_people  psyche_of_dependency 
august 2013 by jerryking
African Guyanese would require an empowering familial-ethnic environment and an enabling political-economic one to be successful in business
August 21, 2013 | Stabroek News | F. Hamley Casep.

Few African Guyanese grow up in an environment in which table conversation is centred around business matters or matters to do with the production and supply of goods and services. Sadly, African Guyanese may be more inclined to discuss the day’s purchases rather than the day’s sales, for the simple reason that African Guyanese economic activity tends more towards consumption rather than production or supply. Generally speaking, African Guyanese do not see themselves as having the means to produce ‒ land, labour or capital ‒ at their disposal, yet see these as prerequisites for venturing into business for themselves. The problem is compounded by the near absence of ethnic role models. In this sense I feel the problem is one of environment as much as education. In fact the two go hand in hand.

Though as Carl Greenidge says, “The education system should be teaching students about the value of business and what is required to be an entrepreneur” and has failed to do so, the system on its own cannot teach people to be risk takers. It is only the immediate environment that can build the level of self-confidence required to make the difference. There is no substitute for growing up in the environment of a family which is not dysfunctional where Uncle Peter is a car dealer, Aunt Sharon owns a supermarket and Cousin Kimberly owns a successful restaurant. These close-to-home realities have a far greater impact on a young person’s realization that they too can become a successful business person.
Afro-Guyanese  letters_to_the_editor  economic_development  entrepreneurship  generational_wealth  consumption  role_models  entrepreneur  risk-taking  factors_of_production  family  cultural_values  consumer_mindset  producer_mindset  rituals  dining 
august 2013 by jerryking
African Guyanese concerns cannot be articulated by a political party parliament
November 12, 2006 | Stabroek News |Dennis Wiggins

"A renaissance is needed but putting it forward as a political strategy may be dangerous"

Mr. F.. Skinner's letter "A renaissance is needed but putting it forward as a political strategy may be dangerous" (11/08/06)

Mr. Phillips in his letter captioned; "The concept of peace was used to attack the African psyche (11/08/06);"
Afro-Guyanese  letters_to_the_editor  ACDA  PNC  politics  strategic_thinking  human_psyche  propaganda  victimhood 
august 2013 by jerryking
The gathering storm
Jun 18, 2013 | Trinidad Express Newspaper | By Rolph Balgobin.

A darker and more invidious force is also developing in our society bizarrely masked by these surface ripples of discontent. It is a counterculture, which has a vastly different value system to the mainstream. This phenomenon has been treated as a social issue—in fact it is rapidly morphing into a challenge for the economic, political and security systems in our society as well.

There are large and growing parts of this country where the law does not rule. Where the police cannot go, except in force. Being there is like being in another dimension. Time slows, and values are extremely different to the rest of the society. We work for what we have, they take what they want. We take the long view, they think short term. We hope to die old, they are prepared to die young. We value dedication, they value least effort. We contemplate, they proliferate—more young men to kill tomorrow.

This has gone from a criminal fringe to a full culture, which is rising up and challenging the law-abiding society. This is a monster, and it intends to destroy our democracy. The media only reports the murders—it misses the causes.

Our sociologists have only imperfectly described, far less explained, the very serious nature of what is before us. And so the challenge continues to grow while we use race and ethnicity to explain little black boys killing each other. This is a misdiagnosis.
op-ed  Caribbean  thug_code  dysfunction  killings  violence  values  Trinidad_&_Tobago  men  masculinity  Afro-Guyanese  Afro-Caribbeans  sociologists  race  root_cause  ethnicity  counterculture  lawlessness  cultural_values  value_systems 
july 2013 by jerryking
The African Guyanese community has to find a way to develop strong financial independence
April 8, 2013 | Stabroek News | F. Skinner.

The African Guyanese community is in deep trouble. The community is always protesting, shot at and sometimes killed by police, with no improvement to their situation. Why is that? Their representatives in the TUC, the majority opposition and ACDA have somehow manoeuvred them into a box of irrelevance, with no obvious way out unless they are willing to recognize/accept that they are flawed in their approach and are willing/able to take the necessary steps to get out.
What is the way out? Find a strategy to develop financial relevance in the community. I can hear the exclamations, “Here Skinner go again!” Well, Skinner knows that people respect education backed with strong financial capabilities. People respect people with strong financial independence. That is not in the community, thus the disrespect and the impotence....There should be an organization in every city, every village, every little community, teaching financial management and wealth generation. Look for cooperative business ventures that can be carried out in the communities. Look at struggling communities like Ituni and Kwakwani. See how we can match them with investors or get them equipped to get bank loans. Regulate Africans lands so that Joint Ventures can be done easily.
entrepreneurship  history  Afro-Guyanese  Guyana  letters_to_the_editor  African_Guyanese_villages  wealth_creation  self-determination  self-employment  self-help  self-reliance  economic_clout  economic_nationalism  strategic_thinking  institutions  institution-building  generational_wealth 
april 2013 by jerryking
Coalition to build its own 1823 monument – Nigel Hughes
January 6, 2013 | Stabroek News |

Last week, ACDA, the All African Guyanese Council, the Pan-African Movement, the African Welfare Council, the Guyana Institute of Historical Research, and the People’s Parliament announced the formation of a coalition to establish the 1823 monument in its rightful place, dubbing the planned location disrespectful to African ancestors.
Afro-Guyanese  Guyana  slavery  memorials  history  ACDA  symbolism 
january 2013 by jerryking
A Tribute to Hugh Cholmondeley
Aug.13,2012 | RJR News - Jamaican News Online | Sir Ron Sanders.
tributes  obituaries  Afro-Guyanese  journalists  radio 
august 2012 by jerryking
Fascinating history of Guyana needs to be taught
January 19 2012 | Share News | Posted by Murphy Browne Thursday

At the Georgetown public library, after some probing, I unearthed a book I had read about on the Internet about Plaisance/Sparendaam on the East Coast Demerara, Plaisance From Emancipation to Independence and Beyond by Beryl Adams-Haynes, published in 2010. Further investigation yielded information that the book was also available at the University of Guyana Berbice Campus Library located at Tain on the Courentyne and could not be taken out but was available for a two-hour loan in the library.



I am still puzzled and disappointed at the lack of books about the Village Movement in the Guyana public library system. It was at the Toronto Reference Library that I eventually found a copy of Thompson’s 2002 book, Unprofitable Servants: Crown Slaves in Berbice Guyana 1803-1831. In spite of the fact that it is the only copy in the Toronto Public Library system, I was happy to have the opportunity to read it since it yielded much information about the “Winkel slaves” and the area of Winkle, New Amsterdam.
Afro-Guyanese  Berbice  slavery  Guyana  history  African_Guyanese_villages 
february 2012 by jerryking
Jamaican middle and upper classes don't have the entrepreneurial spirit — Ventura - Business - JamaicaObserver.com
BY PAUL RODGERS Business Editor rodgersp@jamaicaobserver.com

Friday, January 27, 2012

.....Ventura warned policy makers and investors not to be risk averse. "They do not realise that the status quo is often more dangerous than the unknown.

THE poverty that blights much of the Caribbean economy has one big upside -- it has created a huge pool of people rich with entrepreneurial spirit......."[the poor] the most innovative group in Jamaica," the Mico University College academic later told Caribbean Business Report. "The middle and upper classes don't have that entrepreneurial spirit."

......More established businesses often just wait for management consultants to advise them or pick up ideas from business magazines, he said. "Many of the main productive enterprises are not nearly as creative."......."Science is the dynamo behind worldwide socio-economic progress," he added. "A society with limited scientific capabilities and literacy, as exists in Jamaica and other parts of the Caribbean, diminishes the scope for entrepreneurship."
Jamaica  entrepreneurship  social_classes  Caribbean  Afro-Guyanese  unimaginative 
january 2012 by jerryking
Africans then, African-Guyanese now - Stabroek News - Guyana
By A. A. Fenty | 1 Comment
Frankly Speaking | Friday, March 4, 2011
Afro-Guyanese  politics  Guyanese 
march 2011 by jerryking
We should learn the lessons of history - Stabroek News - Guyana
February 28, 2011

Set aside whether the major uprising of 1763 was on February 23, or as some argue February 27, 1763 [Ed note: There is no dispute among historians in the field that the correct date is February 27], it was the valiant effort of a brutalized enslaved people to secure their God-given rights of freedom, human dignity and justice.
Their initial efforts and failures have many important lessons for all of us, in particular those who still hunger for real freedom, human dignity and justice, three pillars upon which to build sustainable peace and progress. I hope and pray that this generation can overcome a serious weakness noticeable throughout history; it is where rational people and their leaders seem unable to learn from the many lessons of history.
Why did Chiang Kai Shek fail to listen to voices calling for change until it was all too late? Why did King George III and his cabinet take the path of coercion instead of conciliation with the American colonies? And just these past few weeks we witnessed a stubborn Egyptian leader exit.
But the lesson – the cause of the 1763 failure was primarily due to a familiar form of folly – failing, as we say to keep their eyes on the ball, and learning from previous failed attempts for freedom. The leaders of the new ‘freed slave’ state set up by them after chasing their European oppressors, failed because of disunity, and a failure to appreciate the wisdom to set aside all differences – I mean all real or perceived personal differences – and accept that all of their energies ought to be concentrated on the total elimination of the cruel system which they faced.
letters_to_the_editor  disunity  Afro-Guyanese  history  Guyanese  Guyana  dissension  lessons_learned  personal_animosity  personal_invective  fallacies_follies  personal_sacrifice 
february 2011 by jerryking
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