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By Dwijendra RooplallMembers of Parliament were yesterday in discussion with Professor Dr. Ivelaw Lloyd Griffith, an expert within the realm of political science and international relations, who has served extensively within the field of academia as a senior vice president, dean and professor at several universities in the US. He is currently the President of the Fort Valley State University.US Ambassadorto Guyana,D. Brent HardtProfessor Dr. Ivelaw GriffithThe professor is a native Guyanese with U.S Citizenship. His visit was facilitated by the United States through its Ambassador to Guyana, D. Brent Hardt.The Ambassador in addressing the gathering of MPs said that the US brought Dr. Griffith as “part of a Public Diplomacy speakers’ tour and to engage a wide range of audiences on issues of concern to our bilateral agenda. I have known Dr .Griffith for many years…he has been someone to whom the US State Department and the Department of Defence has turned to, to provide background and other information as we head off to the region to undertake our diplomatic assignments, and he has written so extensively on Caribbean issues… with seven and soon to be eight books and over fifty articles to his credit. So we really couldn’t think of somebody better to come down and speak to what’s happening in the Caribbean region in terms of security, what? the challenges are and how we might work together to address them.”Hardt disclosed that Dr. Griffith will be heading to Trinidad after Guyana.Among the MPs present in Parliament where the event was hosted were leader of A Partnership of National Unity (APNU) David Granger, APNU’s Rupert Roopnaraine; Alliance For Change (AFC) leader Khemraj Ramjattan, and others from the two parties respectively.What was noteworthy was that the government’s side of the House was almost empty with the only MP representing the Peoples Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) being Manzoor Nadir, who explained that the reason for the party MPs no-show was because twenty of them are in Canada.Dr. Griffith, in addressing those gathered, spoke of some of the security challenges facing Guyana. He formatted his discussions in an interactive manner that saw pronouncements by those present followed by remarks from Griffith. He said that there is no unanimity in the definition of security challenges since it is perceived differently by everyone, hence the need for varying input.Beyond pronouncing on the security sector,Wholesale NFL Jerseys, Dr. Griffith said he is looking to build partnerships that can be mutually beneficial to the Caribbean and the Fort Valley State University, for which he is the President.Dr. Griffith said that irrespective of what side one is on politically, people in the policy-making arena are caught up in the technical issues and are not able to sit back and focus non-politically on issues affecting the country.? He said that policy-makers within the security sector need a chance to breathe and think.He articulated that most of the security challenges are linked in the Caribbean and the US among other countries.Speaking on these challenges, the MPs were asked to give one word that expressed in their mind a security challenge within Guyana.AFC MP Trevor Williams said resources, and expounded on the lack of resources, both human and capital, in monitoring and having the capacity to intercept and investigate border issues as a challenge to the security sector.AFC’s Valerie Lowe saw Venezuela as being a security challenge, citing discomfort with the nature that the neighbouring country is laying claim to and ownership of a significant part of Guyana, and wanted to know what Guyana would do if Venezuela decides to proceed with occupation, more so in the context of possible military support from the United States or United Kingdom in backing this country.APNU’s Rupert Roopnaraine spoke to border issues, including the research activity between the exclusive economic zone of Guyana and Venezuela, the Brazilian incursions and the New River Triangle debacle, with respect to protecting the environment and sovereignty in that region.Griffith said what is true for Guyana is true for many nations in the Caribbean and explained that two of the security challenges plaguing the region include Maritime and Territorial disputes. He articulated that many jurisdictions don’t have the military capacity to deal with these. He said in cases like this diplomacy is also relevant to mitigate troubles.The Professor also stressed that of importance is the need to consider private stakeholders as entities that can play a role and bring some of the resources needed to enable society to meet its challenges and not just government and the state.Griffith said that while resources can challenge the country materially and leave it unable to control certain situations, the country can “beef up” things that it can control, such as diplomacy.Cathy Hughes of the AFC spoke of policing as a challenge, citing public confidence in the police force as a deterrent to what can be achieved in the area of crime and security.APNU’s Christopher Jones posited administration and the lack thereof as a security challenge, he said a country could have the resources but with poor administration the country will be going nowhere.According to Griffith,Cheap Wholesale Jerseys, none of the challenges facing the region and the US (which he stressed is the biggest player in the hemisphere) are one-dimensional. He said that the challenges are transnational, so drugs, crime and deportation are all interlinked.Griffith asserted that interdependence of the world is such that one doesn’t have to be in close proximity to a country to be affected by it. The professor expressed that due to interdependence you don’t have to know of a place or country in the world but a development there can affect what you do.Speaking to the point made by APNU’s Christopher Jones, Dr Griffith said that even when you have the resources, “impacting the resources sometimes is corruption, impacting the resources’ adequate use is sometimes efficiency,Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale, so you have got to ask the question that not only is it where do I get the resources and how many resources I need . The correct question is the administration of the resources enabling us to deal with the challenge, rather than complicating and becoming a challenge itself.”“I wrote in relation to the Caribbean and Latin America about what is called the “platitude syndrome” Prime Ministers and Presidents making grand speeches, signing treaties and as if that solves the problem, very little attention to implementing, following up. If you took Guyana as a jurisdiction itself,Jerseys NFL Cheap, you’ll see how many international treaties Guyana has signed that it not only hasn’t done anything to follow up on, as a matter of fact the people who are responsible for implementing don’t even know the treaties exist, and it’s no consolation to Guyana to say that that happens elsewhere in the Caribbean. So you’ve got to ask the question: are the platitudes sufficient and the answer is no. You’ve got to go beyond the treaty, go beyond speech,CHeap NFL Jerseys China, do something about the promise made,” Griffith emphasised.He said that a proper follow-up of the treaties signed is necessary to find out how things are progressing and if things are well implemented.“It is having a disposition to understand how do we critically go beyond the context and do something about following through,NFL Jerseys Authentic Cheap,” said Griffith.He articulated on the importance of the family and spoke to the issue of deportation as a security challenge within the region afterwards closing off.

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