Who's Lying and Other Blunders?
Compiled by Rakesh Rampertab

On proper coverage?

"5 ft breach spotted in conservancy dam "- Kaieteur New headline, 1/30/2005

"No breach found in dam"- Chronicle headline, 1/31/2005

"The badly battered body of a male East Indian that was discovered about 08:30 hours on Tuesday morning along the Mocha Access Road, East Bank Demerara, is yet to be identified." (According to Chronicle, Oct 30,2003.)

" The police have launched an investigation to determine the identity of an East Indian male whose body was found along the Mocha access road, East Bank Demerara early yesterday morning.The dead man was estimated to be in his early thirties and sources said that apart from swelling to the right side of his face, the corpse bore no other marks of violence." (According to Stabroek News, October 28, 2003.)



Is the Arts Editor of Stabroek News and new Vice-Chancellor of UG, Mr. Al Creighton, a Liar?

“Mr. Rampertab also mentions the comments in the local press about VS Naipaul and a passing remark by Al Creighton in the year 2000 about Salman Rushdie. Both merit responses which will have to be addressed on another

         —Al Creighton, Arts Editor for Stabroek News, on 11/10/2002, in an article on the Guyana Prize for Literature; responding to criticism by Rakesh Rampertab that he made serious mistakes in his interpretation of the 2 main characters of Salman Rushdie’s famous Satanic Verses. Mr. Creighton noted, amongst other things in an article in 2001, that the 2 characters were Hindus. They were Muslims. The point made was that if an "Arts Editor" of a national paper could make such a blatant error in reading this famous book, what does it say about the editor's literary skills and literature in Guyana per se? Despite his saying that he'll follow up, nothing has been said about it.

In early October, Al Creighton wrote a piece on the deceased Palestinian scholar-literary critic, Professor Edward Said who passed away in late September. It was in the Arts Section of Stabroek News. Mr. Creighton said that Mr. Said died "suddenly." This is false. Professor Said has been suffering from leukemia for the past 11 years. In fact, he has been going in and out of hospital for years now. This goes to show what nonsense passes by columnists as research.

Writing on Wilson Harris (see "The Guyana Prize and its critics") the Guyanese author in England, Al Creighton say on January 19, 2003, "His recognition has been sufficient to earn him nominations for the Nobel Prize.” That same month also (January 4, 2003), a Stabroek News editorial titled "Wilson Harris," probably written by Mr. Creighton, also says that Mr. Harris has "twice been shortlisted for the Nobel Prize."

Mr. Creighton, a diehard fan of Mr. Harris, is bull-shitting the Guyanese public because, unlike other awards like the British Booker Prize, candidates for the Noble Prize in Literature are not "shortlisted." Yes, people speculate, but the potential candidates are not made known to the public. Not even after the award has been given. See the Noble Foundation statement: "According to the Statutes of the Nobel Foundation, nominators must not make public the names of the nominees nor inform nominees privately of the proposals. Even invitations to propose names are confidential. Proposals received for the award of a prize, and investigations and opinions concerning the award of a prize may not be divulged. The names of the nominees are classified as confidential information for at least fifty years. "

The quarrel between Frederick Kissoon and Al Creighton in Late October 2003 on UG Scholarship and Racism...

According to Mr. Creighton, “The faculty then sends its nominations to the University Scholarships Committee on which all the Deans, the Registrar and the Deputy Registrar sit. They meet to elect those to be sent forward for awards.” Professor Kissoon ckecjed this out and said; “He [Mr. Creighton] needs to apologize to the Registrar since he incorrectly states in his letter that such a person sits on the scholarship committee. Dr. Chanderbali, the Registrar, told me he is never invited to sit. How can he be invited to be in a process that is meant to be secretive? I am in my eighteen year at UG and I can boldly state that one of the unsavoury procedures at UG is how scholarships are arrived at.”

...On the education system of Guyana

“More and more of our children are growing up with little ability and practice in reading or writing. This will be a handicap all their lives. The capacity to learn and understand any subject increases or languishes to the extent that you can or cannot read properly and express yourself clearly. This is fundamental and it is astonishing that our top educators have not done more to close this gaping breach in the educational system that lets in such floods of ignorance and incomprehension in the society.”
     -Dr. Ian McDonald on August 25, 2003, from article “The need to make language clear and fresh.”

“Our students who in the 1960's were ahead of their Caribbean counterparts were reduced to the bottom of the performance ladder by the end of the PNC regime in 1992. This is quite a shame on those who occupied the seat of power during that period! Today, the performance gap between our Guyanese students and their regional counterparts have been considerably narrowed. As I mentioned earlier, our students for the first time since the examinations were introduced some 30 years ago have won the overall best performance on three occasions, significantly since the assumption of office of the current PPP/Civic Administration in October of 1992.”
      -Hydar Ally in “viewpoint”article for Chronicle, dated 10/23/2003, and titled “Red Stripe Bowl win highlights correlation between democracy and good performance.”

Willful Mistakes by David Hinds and Frederick Kissoon?

I refer to David Hinds’ letter (21.10.03) captioned “Mrs Jagan seems to shut the door on power sharing,” which he claims is commenting on her article in the Mirror (October 12) captioned “No Power Sharing.” Not being a regular subscriber to or reader of the Mirror, I borrowed a copy from a friend to read Mrs. Jagan’s article. The first thing I noticed is that her article is in fact headed “Winner Takes All” and not “No Power Sharing” as David Hinds claims.
  —John Da Silva, noting that Dr. David Hinds, WPA forefront figure and advocate of "Power Sharing,"
clearly or purposely mistook the title of Janet Jagan's editorial. See Stabroek News, 10/25/2003.

"This is the second part of my letter on Keane Gibson’s book, The Cycle of Racial Oppression in Guyana (SN, Sep. 28). Ms. Gibson makes a bold claim in revisionist history - that a vicious caste system in Hindu religion makes for an unmitigated racist hatred of other people and the African Guyanese are seen as the lowest common denominator by this caste system."
   —Dr. Frederick Kissoon, UG Professor and well-known political analyst. His critique of the named book was printed in Stabroek News in four letters. The error? Simple. The name is Kean, not Keane.


© 2001