Eyewitness: Safe to come out…

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana

…from COVID 19?

It’s very hard to find good news nowadays in the papers. Domestic violence, murders, robberies, rapes, fires, trash-talking politicians lusting for leadership etc…dominate the front pages. So, your Eyewitness was quite chuffed recently to observe both the number of COVID infections and deaths coming down in our dear old mudland. We’re certainly gonna be inundated after the world sat on its hands at COP26, but hey!!!…there’s gonna be more of us to rush to higher ground!! The cup half-full and all that!!

So, what does this mean for us? Should we invite our neighbours over for that Thanksgiving BBQ in our backyards, and chug down some cold ones while being bombarded by some misogynistic dancehall lyrics? Maskless, of course? Well, not quite yet. This COVID-19 is quite sneaky – and just when you think you’ve got it covered – BAM!! It hits you right in the national solar plexus!

Just look over in our good neighbour Trinidad. Just the other day, Rowley was sneering at us for accepting COVID vaccines from every Tom, Dick and Modi out there. TRINIDAD was only gonna use the BEST!! WHO-approved, thank you!! Well, look at his numbers – infections and deaths going off the charts recently! And while one may say that Trinidad still had to wait around for vaccines – the UN COVAX facility to deliver to help poor countries was blanked by the rich countries – Europe don’t have that excuse.

Yet they’ve become the COVID epicenter of the world right now! TWO MILLION CASES and almost 27 thousand deaths reported in the continent last week! This was more than half of all COVID-19 deaths globally!! And for sure, most of those countries have vaccinated way more than half of their adult populations. Britain, for instance, weigh in at 90%, and had several lulls in their infections and deaths before!! And that’s why WE can’t get complacent with our “more than half of our adult population vaccinated”!

There are just too many variables with this virus for us to take our countermeasures for granted. We’ve all heard about the variants – starting with “alpha” from Wuhan through beta, gamma, delta and now “mu” from Peru. The delta strain’s been the deadliest of them all – based on its transmissibility factor and extreme symptoms. So, yes Boyo…absolutely NO THANKSGIVING BBQs, even though you wanna be hip to segue from Halloween to Thanksgiving, to follow the American way!!

Instead, you should keep that black cake primed with daily libations of white rum, so that, on Christmas Day, you can virtuously say, “No, thank you,” to offerings of liquor while you wolf down slices of your “spiced” cake to live another day!!

…on under-invoicing?

One of the most common dodges by local businessmen is to declare their goods being imported at a much lower price than they paid for it, so that their duties are lowered. Your Eyewitness saw one local fuel importer winning a libel case against a local newspaper for claiming he engaged in the act. How dare it be suggested that this happens!! The problem, according to the Judge, was the newspaper didn’t provide “proof” of their allegations.

So how is this proof secured when everyone in the supply chain is in on the scam?? Well, there are groups that track these things – whether under- or over-invoicing. For instance, Global Financial Integrity (GFI) is one such company, and their research shows that, between 2008-2017, there were US$8.7 TRILLION in discrepancies!! They provide a service for Customs to check what was the average price of a commodity shipped from a port for the last 12 months.
Did our customs provide this baseline price?

…with diabetes

How the world has changed. Back in 1921, when Canadian Fredrick Banting discovered insulin and its effect on diabetes, he sold the patent for $1!! Because he saw the need to help mankind.
Dare we ask this of Big Pharma?