PYO slams Hardt’s position on LEAD project
NITED States Ambassador to Guyana, Brent Hardt, remains in the spotlight over his position on the implementation of the $300M USAID-funded Leadership and Democracy (LEAD) project.
The Progressive Youth Organisation (PYO) is the most recent to condemn his position.In a statement issued on Friday, the youth group said: “The PYO views the position taken by the ambassador as very offensive and directly ignores the principles of sovereignty and national self-determination that is publicly espoused by the American State Department.
“It is a violation of all aspects of independence and non-interference when the chief diplomat of a foreign nation chooses to ignore the Executive power of their host nation. It is a direct challenge to Guyana’s autonomy and seeks to impose the will of a single person over that of an entire people.”
The PYO called on the Ambassador to recognise that he has overstepped his ambit by pursuing a project that has not met the approval of his host country.
The statement said: “The ambassador must know that he has challenged, in a very public manner, the sovereignty of a nation.
“The ambassador must know that by ignoring diplomatic norms and decency he has managed to sour, what have been friendly relations between the USA and Guyana.”
According to the group, while it recognises that the American organisation,the International Republican Institute (IRI), has been tasked with the implementation of the LEAD project, it also recognises that the IRI has a reputation of interference in the internal politics of a country.
“They have been implicated in the overthrow of Aristide in Haiti, have supported the 2009 coup in Honduras, and have created political coalitions in Poland, etc. These activities have been in direct violation of the principles of self-governance and self-determination. The use of such an organisation and the public stance of the ambassador can only lead to the conclusion that there is an active attempt by the ambassador to usurp democracy in Guyana,” the group said.
The PYO called for national condemnation of the public stance of the US Ambassador.
“We note that while the USA has had over 200 years in shaping its democracy and did not suffer interference of foreign powers, likewise Guyana too has a right to pursue its democratic development,” the PYO stressed.