While many Commonwealth countries have ceremonial Heads of State (HOS) who are visible symbols of national unity and who have life long track records of social cohesion, Rowley has selected Christine Kangaloo Garcia who, if newspaper reports are to be believed, has a public track record of not promoting anything other than PNMs partisan interest.
Mary Simon, for example, Canada’s 30th Governor General, was a civil servant, diplomat and broadcaster and that country’s first Indigenous Governor General (an Inuk from Quebec). Ms Simon has a proven track record of promoting indigenous issues relevant to a multicultural and inclusive Canada.
For example, she was actively involved in negotiations leading to the 1982 patriation of the Canadian Constitution, which formally entrenched Aboriginal and Treaty rights in the supreme law of Canada.
By contrast Ms Garcia has no equivalent public record of inclusiveness.
New Zealand Governor General, Dame Cindy Kiro of Maori descent, is a public health academic, administrator and advocate. She has a track record of promoting the concept of an accepted broad based inclusive New Zealand where every creed and race find an equal place.
Droupadi Murmu from India’s tribal community is India’s ceremonial Head of State and a former Councillor and Governor. From 1994 to 1997 she taught Hindi, Odia, maths and geography voluntarily in Rairangpur, never claiming full salary for these teaching appointments.
Australia’s Governor General is David Hurley, a 42 year veteran of the Australian Defense Force who saw action in Somalia and East Timor and who served as Chief of the Defense Force.
Given geopolitical challenges with Japan significantly increasing its defence budget, China’s expansionary actions, North Korea’s nuclear threat and India’s growing military importance, one can easily discern the symbolic importance in Hurley’s ceremonial appointment.
Why can Rowley not follow in the footsteps of progressive, Commonwealth nations who have ceremonial leaders with extensive track records of speaking to issues of national unity and consensus?
He could have chosen as President, any citizen with a track record of uniting, rather than dividing us.
Were there no possible candidates from among our cultural icons, diaspora, academics, working class or sporting fraternities?
Instead Keith Rowley chose, if reports in social media and in the press are to be believed, a person who has up to this very day served unwaveringly the partisan interests of the PNM elites whose interest appear to forever dominate our democracy.
MP for Naparima