The new group – Reform, Inform, Sustain, Educate (RISE) Guyana – which initially described itself as a “group of free-thinking, post-racial, individuals” pushing for “constitutional reform”, has now decided it is a “movement”. They had committed to holding countrywide consultations on the subject, presumably in parallel with the Government which had budgeted million for their own efforts. Not much was heard about either set of consultations, save an event organised by the now ubiquitous 10th Vice Chancellor of the University of Guyana (as the invitation insisted on pointing out), who, perhaps aided by his Cabinet, organised “a distinguished and knowledgeable panel” to discuss “Constitutional Change: To court brave change or to leave well enough alone”.The RISE Guyana Movement, part of the “distinguished and knowledgeable panel”, proposed as part of the constitutional changes contemplated, the electoral system revert from Proportional Representation (PR) utilising a single list of candidates to the “first past the post” constituent system (CS), such as had prevailed during the colonial era. They did not elaborate whether their proposal came out of their “nationwide consultations” or full blown, like Athena from Zeus, from their own brows. Lincoln Lewis, General Secretary of the Guyana Trades Union Congress (TUC) pointed out that this electoral feature is presently covered by the “Representation of the Peoples’ Act” (RPA), which goes back to 1964 when the British made their initial change from CS to PR; and as such, a reversion did not require “constitutional change”. One cannot CHANGE in the Constitution what is not present in the Constitution: one can only INTRODUCE.Rather than conceding their faux pas, the “distinguished and knowledgeable” RISE Guyana Movement rather snarkily purported to “educate” Lewis on the workings of the electoral system since 1964. But it would appear that they, “distinguished and knowledgeable” as they might be, also need some “education” on the subject. They claimed in their latest missile (sic) to Lewis that the RPA “was designed by the politicians of the day for the purpose of protecting their parties and perpetuating the dominance of those existing parties.”But any primary school student who covered the Social Studies curriculum would know that the CS to PR change was made by the British to oust the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) from office. Protesting this “fiddled” arrangement, Jagan famously cried, “If PR, then CR!!” Unfortunately for him and his supporters, the People’s National Congress (PNC) coalesced with the United Force under PR in 1964 and it was the PPP that suffered “CR” for the next 28 years. While the CS was the method for “democratic” elections in Britain and its colonies from the onset of that method of governance, the British claimed PR would achieve the same goal RISE now champions for its elimination: the end to “race-based” voting. Prior to 1964, the PPP had won general elections handily because their more widely geographically distributed supporters gave them an advantage under the CS. In the 1961 elections the combined percentages gained by the PNC and US were greater than that of the PPP, yet they lost.The theory proffered by the British was that since the entire country was one constituency and there was no minimum per cent cut-off, there would be a proliferation of parties elected to the Legislature, since each would need only a few thousand votes to gain one seat. This would result in a fairer allocation of seats matched to votes garnered. But it was common knowledge, and confirmed by declassified files, that the British actually made the change because they wanted regime change.It is to be noted that others beside RISE have noted the pros and cons of both PR and CS and we presently have a hybrid system where we have 25 seats elected directly from constituencies and the remaining 40 from PR. Rather than only focusing on constitutional changes to move voting beyond “race”, maybe the “post-racial” members of RISE should inform the rest of Guyana how they were able to achieve this blessed state under the present Constitution.