At a time when there have been calls for him to step down over his leadership style, Leader of the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR), David Granger warned against factionalism, as he reminded the party on its 64th Anniversary of the principles laid by their founder-leader Linden Forbes Sampson Burnham.
In a pre-recorded speech, delivered during a simple flag raising ceremony at Congress Place on Tuesday, Granger relied heavily on sentiments expressed by the late founder-leader during his reign in office.
Granger recalled that during PNCR’s 1st Biennial Delegates Congress in 1975, Burnham warned of the menace of factionalism.
“To be sponsoring and joining factions in the Party is to indulge in anti-Party activity calculated to weaken…the Party. There may be different motivations, some springing from personal ambition, others from a minority position firmly held. Whichever it may be, the objective result is undesirable and deleterious. Factions and factionalists are wittingly, or unwittingly, instruments of our enemies…,” Burnham had said in his address.
Granger said the Founder-Leader was committed to “…reinforcing the solidarity of our Party by knitting groups together, not splitting them apart; by building up, not breaking down; by multiplying – not dividing and subtracting – membership and to suppressing schisms, factionalism and opportunism.”
He said Burnham was equally conscious of the changing conditions in the country and the party’s response to contemporary challenges. “The PNC’s transition from a party in opposition to one in government necessitated changes,” Granger posited.
He said when Guyana was preparing to embark on a path to become a republic, the majority of ministers from the original cohort changed after the first term in office ended with the 1968 General Elections.
“The PNC again entered government as part of a multi-ethnic coalition in 2015 and is now in opposition,” he posited.
Since the loss of the 2020 General and Regional Elections to the Peoples Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C), Granger has come in for heavy criticism but Granger said the party is still pursuing the true path charted by its Founder-Leader. “The new cohort of Parliamentarians has been elected to consolidate the Party’s massive popular support by intensifying the effort to realise the objective of providing a good life for everyone during the coming Decade of Development,” Granger said.
PNCR was established on October 5, 1957. Tuesday’s flag raising ceremony was attended by Chairman of the PNCR, Volda Lawrence; Vice-Chairperson, Annette Ferguson, MP; Past Leader, Robert Corbin; Leader of the Opposition, Joseph Harmon; Mayor of Georgetown, Ubraj Narine; Chairman of Regional Democratic Demerara-Mahaica, Daniel Seeram and a number of Opposition Members of Parliament including Opposition Chief Whip, Christopher Jones; Senior Counsel Roysdale Forde and Attorney-at-Law Amanza Walton-Desir.