Allow me this opportunity to extend congratulations and best of wishes to all Guyanese on the 43rd anniversary as a Cooperative Republic. This is indeed a proud achievement not only as a democratic apparatus after Independence but to know that only through the inclusive and self help nature as a state can we succeed.
As Black History month comes to a close in February, the famous Imam Cuffy is often mentioned in my presentations as a reminder to the world and Guyanese of all extractions, that his sacrifice in the 1763 revolution benefitted all “in extricating themselves and their generations from the chains of slavery and modern human trafficking”.
While there is much to celebrate in the progress of our beautiful nation of six races; with improved roadways, enhanced schools and booming housing schemes, the environment in Georgetown and the outside villages still remains in the hands of those who have “inherited the massah mentality” to exact a pound of flesh with a gallon of blood for two cents work!
It is laudable to note that our ancestors came from the clean, civilized and literate country of Mali in West Africa, so in the news these days, that boasted of Timbuktu, the city of 120,000 books and 100’s of schools in the 14th century. Today, unlike them, we have found ourselves outdoing each other in littering, instead of liberating; the very places we call home and expect others to take care of it.
I remember the days of the former President, the late Forbes Burnham, where every Guyanese was responsible to clean up their environs and plant their gardens while enforcing their neighbor does the same, in the name of “self help”. That cooperative nature of our Republic calls for such civic pluralism engagement, where not only the Muslims for the Environment organization in Georgetown, http://guymei.blogspot.com/ driven by Shamal Zamaludin, is active but every faith and political leader needs to adopt this challenge sooner than later. Isn’t cleanliness is next to Godliness? Isn’t cleanliness half of Faith? Isn’t a clean country attracts investors?
The very first civic action the Prophet of lslam, on whom be peace, undertook, upon his arrival in his newly adopted homestead of Madina, was to clean the wells and streets from pollution and ensure clean water was running in the orchards and public streams.
Happy Mash and make sure no one litters!