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|Romel Roopnarine responds to GPA president|
|Sunday, 12 August 2012 20:00|
I have noted a press statement from the Guyana Press Association (GPA) and am hopeful that its President Mr. Gordon Moseley follows through with his warning of raising the contents of a press release issued by the People’s Progressive Party with Regional and international media associations.
Mr. Moseley is also being encouraged during this process to establish for their edification exactly which part of the party’s release contained ‘threats’ as he so boldly indicates in his theatrical-styled GPA statement in rebuttal.
This individual, who appears to be a one-man army in the GPA based on his latest response, would also do well to articulate how highlighting instances where individuals, inclusive of members of the media, engage in behaviour which serves to divide our people could be construed as attempts to intimidate persons.
It would appear that he has now adopted an anti-journalist stance and is advocating that such transgressions be swept under the carpet and should never be highlighted. By extension, he is apparently advocating that such unbecoming behaviour must be allowed to continue as it is interesting that taking into consideration the concerns expressed by the People’s Progressive Party in its release, not one section of the Guyana Press Association statement by Mr. Moseley was dedicated towards reassuring Guyanese of the GPA’s and Mr. Moseley’s commitment towards playing their part in promoting racial unity in Guyana.
We also hope that all stakeholders, including the Regional and International community take note of the fact that the GPA has termed statements by the PPP as ‘baseless accusations against members of the private media and try to intimidate private and independent journalists’, yet Demerara Waves which is operated by a former President of the Guyana Press Association has stated that ‘it shall not be responding to those accusations at this time’, in relation to the fact that it allowed someone in the comments section of one of its stories to make a post calling for attacks against a particular ethnic group in Guyana.
Sadly, this did not appear serious enough to warrant the concern of the Guyana Press Association and its President Gordon Moseley, whose Facebook posts on July 19th and 20th at the height of the protests and ensuing chaos in Linden, where he was providing constant updates and during which he is reported to have made the racially insensitive posts, have now miraculously disappeared from his account following the PPP press release.
In light of this fact, it appears that Mr. Moseley is now denying that following the unfortunate deaths of three protestors in Linden, he as GPA President on July 19 2012, fully aware of the racially charged environment around him at the time and as was highlighted in the party’s release, shockingly decided to make a comparison between the Linden situation and the way the police dealt with protestors in Albion a few years ago, during which he stated that the area is a PPP stronghold and claimed that protestors there had burned a police station and then reasoned why no one was killed there as opposed to what transpired in Linden.
He was wrong on both fronts in his allegations of the Albion protest; however it is interesting that Mr. Moseley only now chose to attack the PPP despite mention being made of the very incident involving him in the Guyana Chronicle close to two weeks ago.
The party also notes that following its release, despite refusing to respond to the stated facts by the PPP, the Demerara Waves web site carried as part of a story West Indies Cricket Board, Corporate Communications Officer Imran Khan lashing out at the PPP for allegedly targeting him, after the party stated that in the lead-up to the Linden events, Khan was unapologetic for using a racist derogatory term to describe the ethnicity of a Minister of Government and people of the minister’s ethnicity
Interestingly, in all of Khan’s ranting about the PPP targeting him, he has not once denied that he made such a racist comment.
Based on these glaring revelations, it is now clear that at least the President of the Guyana Press Association, Mr. Gordon Moseley, is not interested in pursuing the facts and transgressions of certain individuals in society.
It is worthy of note that a responsible press association would have ascertained the facts before rushing to issue such a brash, illogical and insensitive response as characterized by that of Mr. Moseley. I however remain convinced that the actions of these individuals do not highlight a shared or common approach by all members of the media, as there are a number of responsible journalists operating in all of the local media houses.
As such, I encourage those from the profession to not be intimidated by the actions of their seniors and be cowed into not condemning their actions either privately or publicly. It is time that responsible journalists stand up and take back their profession in Guyana, knowing that they must hold the ruling party and government accountable, but also all others in society, including themselves and colleagues.
It is this simple message of responsibility that the GPA President Gordon Moseley has viewed as an attack.
|Last Updated on Monday, 13 August 2012 10:35|
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