Oppressed Guyanese?

By Dr. Sumelia Doraisami

“We’re not”, they say. “This is the 21st century”, they say.

I say:

Oppression is being gunned down while exercising the basic human right of freedom of speech; being riddled in a shower of bullets at the entrance of your home because you dared to question what others comfortably accepted.

Oppression is having no protection against an increasing number of criminal elements in society. It is calling the police and receiving a response days later. It is having your genitals lit afire and being beaten almost to death by the very hands that swore to serve and protect. It is being paid negligible pittances to put your life on the line every day in the armed forces; it is turning to bribery and corruption to feed your children.

Oppression is being unable to receive adequate basic health care in Berbice; it is going from hospital to hospital, doctor to doctor while each of your organs slowly accepts defeat and shuts down. It is standing alone in a poorly ventilated morgue to perform thirty autopsies before noon, not because you are the alpha and the omega of causes of death but because nobody sees the need to train anyone else. Oppression is watching mothers pray for the lives of their sons who are inches away from death’s door because proper basic health care could not be obtained.

Oppression is going to school everyday to ultimately graduate with good grades only to later stand at the entrance of a shop asking passing aunties to “buy something today nah”. It is sending your resume to the sugar factory because there’s no other place to send it. Oppression is being the educated child of an uneducated laborer and still going to work with a sharpened cutlass everyday.

Oppression is … not destined. Choose correctly … Vote sensibly. Color makes no sense when we all bleed under the burden of oppression.


* Dr. Sumelia Doraisami is a trained Guyanese physician who has worked in both the Public and Private Health sectors. 

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