Caribbean Labour Solidarity
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Suspension of Democracy in Guyana

Happy Birthday Chelsea Manning

Caribbean Labour Solidarity supported a well attended silent picket to demand the release of Chelsea Manning at St Martins Church, Trafalgar Square, London.
Chelsea is serving a 35-year prison sentence for whistleblowing and revealing to the public that the US army, the CIA and Iraqi and Afghan forces committed human rights violations.
Chelsea released information in the public interest. The crimes she exposed have not been investigated. Call on President Obama to release her.
more details...

We are deeply concerned about the suspension of the Democratic process in Guyana as this sets a dangerous precedent in the Caribbean Region. Since Independence was granted to most of the British West Indies Parliamentary democracy has been the cornerstone of our political culture in the Caribbean and for the Guyana Government to suspend this process, with no clear date as to when it will be restored, is unacceptable and sets a dangerous precedent.

A PPP government should understand more than most the dangers of such a move. We would like to remind them that the suspension of parliament is the very action the British Government under Winston Churchill took in 1953 to frustrate the democratic aspirations of the masses in Guyana, when they suspended the constitution and then proceeded to manipulate the political and electorial process in an attempt to arrive at a Government of their liking. We urge President Donald Ramotar to urgently recall parliament and restore a functioning democracy without delay, least they be seen as attempting to deny the Guyanese masses a voice and trying to manipulate the electorial process.

The proroguing of parliament since November 10th coming on top of not holding Local government elections for 20 years can only give the impression that the Guyana Government is less concerned with democracy and more concerned with centralising power in the hands of the President, an action more reminiscent of previous dictators. That the Guyana constitution provides for the proroguing of Parliament -a situation which surely cannot be justified in an era of more rather than less dialogue- is no excuse to call an end to discussions in parliament especially with the difficulties presently facing Guyana.

We urge the Government, least they be viewed as irresponsible and reckless at this time, to listen to the call of the National and International community to recall parliament immediately so that those elected to represent the people of Guyana can have a voice.

Dictatorship in Haiti

We are now fast approaching the fifth anniversary of the 12 January 2010 earthquake. In many ways, it will be a historic moment for Haiti. Not only because of the devastation caused five years ago but also as it is the day on which the country will officially become a dictatorship again and as such, just months after Jean-Claude Duvalier's death, takes one more giant step back into its Duvalierist past. The Haiti Support Group provide in-depth analysis of this concerning situation in the latest edition of their Briefing entitled "Who needs elections?"
It may be downloaded from here...