Democracy and rights
Guyana is a democracy where fair elections
are regularly held and results are respected. Violence
and discrimination against indigenous peoples are
problems. Freedom of the press and opinion is guaranteed
in the constitution but is not always fully respected.
In international rankings of the strength of
democratic institutions and of political and civil
rights, Guyana ranks in an intermediate layer, at about
the same level as Brazil.
Offers a comprehensive list of airports in Guyana, including international airports with city located, size and abbreviation, as well as the biggest airlines.
In Transparency International's (TI) index of
corruption in the world's countries, Guyana is ranked 85
out of 180 countries and territories. It is worse than
neighboring Suriname (in place 70) but better than most
countries in South America (the whole list is here).
Guaya has improved its performance in TI's index
significantly since 2012, partly because efforts are
being made to hold former political leaders accountable
for misuse of state assets.
Freedom of expression and media
The government controls the country's only radio
station, and opposition politicians have complained
about not getting enough space in the media.
Prosecution can provide fines and imprisonment for up
to two years, which contributes to self-censorship among
journalists. Harassment also occurs. The leadership of
the authority that oversees the media is appointed by
the president, which means that malicious media
organizations can be denied a license.
In Reporters Without Borders Press Freedom Index,
Guyana is ranked 49 out of 180 countries (see full list
here). Freedom House describes the media climate as
"partly free", the middle of three categories.
After the government newspaper Guyana Chronicle
published government-critical articles, Prime Minister
Moses Nagamootoo in 2015 ordered that all headlines in
the newspaper be approved by his office before being
The media climate was frosty also under President
Bharrat Jagdeo (1999–2011), who was sensitive to
criticism and sometimes expressed disdain for
journalists. A TV reporter was banned from the
president's office because of reports that annoyed the
president, and for a year and a half the state ran an
advertising boycott against a privately owned newspaper
that criticized Jagdeo.
Guyana's privately owned television stations can
usually scrutinize the government without any
consequences, but sometimes the authorities intervene.
It happens that state officials sue reporters for
slander to silence criticism.
Judicial system and legal security
The judiciary is weak, legal processes are slow, and
the conditions in prisons are poor. The police are
accused of corruption and brutality. Crime has become
such a serious problem that it is considered to hamper
the entire country's stability and development. One
reason for the increase in crime is said to be that the
US expels convicted Guyanans after serving a sentence.
In 2004, allegations came that the government had direct
links to a death patrol that would have been behind a
series of extrajudicial executions of suspected
The death penalty is sentenced but no executions have
been carried out since 1997.