Absolute power corrupts absolutely

Recent accusations of political spying here in Grenada reminds us of the saying that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely, and often we see this being played out in ruling circles.

Politicians and other people in positions of power, even when their power is overwhelming, may not be satisfied that they have enough and may want to flatter themselves that like God they are most powerful.

Therefore, they will give people the impression that not only are they all powerful, but they are also all knowing and can be present everywhere, even inside the head of people, so they create spying networks.

Grenadians should be reminded that this year 2013 is the fortieth anniversary of the Watergate scandal in the United States.

In 1972, political operatives of the American Republican Party of the then President, Richard Nixon broke into the headquarters of the Democratic Party at the Watergate complex in Washington D.C.

Their intention was to photograph documents and install listening devices to gather intelligence as part of a massive campaign of political spying and sabotage on behalf of the 1972 Nixon re-election campaign.

However, unfortunately, the break-in was discovered by a security guard at the complex and five men of the break-in team were arrested.

It was uncertain whether Nixon was involved in the plan to break in, but investigations later revealed that he was involved in a massive cover up of the incident in which the FBI, CIA, and the American Justice Department were implicated.

For instance, evidence suggested that he was involved in paying hush money to the men arrested. Nixon’s attitude to his role in the rather bizarre affair could be summed up in some of his own words: “When the President does it, it means that it is okay.”

In other words, power automatically confers innocence on its holders. Might is always right. However, this kind of sentiment was not shard by many Americans since many of them knew what was a criminal act when they saw or heard about one.

Furthermore, they knew that a President was not above the law. In the American Senate, a special committee was set up to investigate the matter.

For over a year, an embattled Nixon resisted calls for him to resign from office and for him to deliver tapes to the Committee of his private conversations in the White House that would either prove or disprove his role in covering up the affair. When he finally turned over some of the tapes, it was observed that there were many areas of erasures in them.

As the crisis deepened, it became increasingly clear to him that he would lose if he allowed impeachment proceeding to be initiated against him. Accordingly, he resigned from the Presidency in August 1974, with more than two years remaining for him to complete his second term in office.

The more I study this affair and consider our Constitution, the more I am convinced that we in Grenada should introduce a clause in our Constitution under which our Prime Ministers and Ministers of government could be impeached when they transgress against the laws of the state.

This would serve as a constant reminder to those in power that it is always good for them to have right and truth on their side.

Truth Seeker

 

A backward step

Please permit me to say briefly that I am an Educator with a track record of 100% success working with my daughters, and children (of other families) including some who were written off by the education system as hopeless. Accordingly, I speak with grand authority on education.

For the last couple weeks I’ve strongly resisted writing on the performance of the ruling NNP administration particularly as it relates to education; however, their education policies amount to such a vexation of the spirit to the extent that my pen has sprung a leak almost out of control way beyond midnight.

The nation was not too surprised when the ruling administration, moving backwards to the era of tribalism and begging for essential school supplies, acted on their manifesto promise to put an end to the universal/free school books program initiated by the former administration.

It is no secret that many families who are perceived not to be needy have in fact made huge sacrifices, not only because of the adverse student-teacher ratio of our public schools, to send their children to the private schools – in some cases having factored in the universal school books program.

Considering, for example, that every Grenadian family including the more financial affluent ones has the greater right to send their children to public school (at the expense of the state to the tune of tens of millions of dollars); logically the decision of the ruling administration is grossly flawed to deny these families the lesser right to the universal school books program particularly after their relieving the state significantly, through their great sacrifices in many cases, of the financial burden to build schools and pay teachers to educate the private school population.

In other words children whose families significantly relieve the burden on the state by their sacrifice to opt for private schools have at least the same right to the universal school books program – whether or not they chose to participate in it – as any other child.

It was also very shameful to hear the Minister for Education griping on national TV about students in secondary school who cannot read and write properly. The people gave them a mandate to act – not to gripe.

The proper thing for the Minister to have done was to inform the nation on what measures he has put in place e.g. to strategically group all such children in two or three secondary schools, depending on where they live, and to assign gifted and talented educators, including specialists in numeracy and literacy, to work with them at the secondary school level including on weekends, holidays and vacation (including this summer vacation for the forty one) to get them up to par within one year.

Additionally, the decision of the present governing administration to effectively end or put on hold universal secondary education and essentially somersault to the past Common Entrance era is both oppressive and amounts to a violation of the legal rights of the forty one affected students, the vast majority or over three fourths of whom are boys, who fell victims at the hand of an incompetent or “square plug in round hole” Minister of Education who has failed to put adequate measures in place at the secondary school to deal with the highly foreseeable issues associated with the advent of universal secondary education.

These forty one students, like any others, were promised and reasonably held great expectation to enter secondary school in September 2013; therefore the decision or action of the Minister of Education represents both a huge psychological as well as a financial blow or detriment to each of these children whose probably mostly single parents now have to fork out the extra funds in these hard economic times to maintain them for at least one additional year in their respective primary schools where, naturally, it will be most difficult if not impossible to administer any remedial program to them.

The worst thing anyone can do to a child, like the Minister for Education, is to fail to educate him or her properly or to inflict/impose devastating and disabling lifetime psychological blows/hurdles on them, for example, by labeling and marketing them as total failures who can’t even pass a non-exam or assessment!

Frankly, in one’s academic life it’s hard to imagine any experience worse than this. The parents of these children are therefore well advised, in the best interest of their children’s education and welfare, to band themselves together to fight for their children.

The parents should also be prepared if necessary to take the Minister of Education to Court to reverse or nullify the decision to deny their children their right to enter secondary school in September 2013.

Abdurraheem A Jones

That Is Man

Nelson Mandela would celebrate his 95th birthday next month (July), God willing he survives the physical challenges that he has been experiencing in recent years, that necessitated that he be admitted again to a South African hospital this month.

Madiba, (his Xhosa name) in my opinion, is the personification of the term man. An uncompromising activist against the brutal apartheid regime in his homeland, South Africa. Nelson Mandela sacrificed the prime years of his life whilst involved in the struggle to free his people from the yoke of prejudice and oppression.

Nelson Mandela is no doubt a living legend. His personal odyssey is as enduring as it is admirable, and his lifetime achievements have been proudly recorded in the pages of his nation’s history books.

Mr. Mandela is recognised without challenge, from most quarters, as a man who enjoys the highest and most widespread level of respect and admiration on our planet today.

But the qualities that I admire the most about Mr. Mandela, are not necessarily his deserved ascension to Nobel Laureate status in 1993, winning the Peace prize, or even the fact that he was elected the first black President of South Africa in 1994. In my mind, there are three other examples of his life that separates him from other mortals.

One experience is visual, and the other two are acts of profound statesmanship, that in my estimation, would elevate Nelson Mandela to the very top of the all time list of accomplished leaders of men.

The first Mandela effect on me, occurred in 1990, when I joined millions of people worldwide to watch a Television broadcast that must be considered to be one of the most momentous visual events of the twentieth century.

The transmitted images depicted a man walking out of prison. But not just any man, but a special person, a man amongst men who with his first few steps towards freedom, signaled the culmination of an unmatched triumph of determination, and individual willpower over a retrograde system of separatist government.

This emotion challenging program showed an unshackled Nelson Mandela, once more a free man, emerging from state captivity, after 27 years as a prisoner of conscience in his own country.

When Nelson Mandela exited the South African prison compound that day, the cameras re-introduced us to a man who had aged visibly. His face was drawn and weathered from the harsh conditions he had experienced during his over a quarter of a century of captivity on Robbens Island, and two other prisons.

Jails that the South African apartheid regime had sent him to in 1962, to serve out a life sentence of hard labour, based on flimsy trumped up charges that accused him of carrying out acts of sabotage, and conspiracy against the state of South Africa.

As Mandela strode purposefully towards the welcoming arms of family members and well wishers, his gait although erect was recognisably slower. But he still managed to display an air of dignity and poise. His body language was not indicative of a broken man, but of one whose spirit had survived a personal nightmare.

We watched a veritable giant walk amongst pygmies. That scene, that walk of triumph, that final validation of right over wrong, would forever be burnished into a special compartment of my brain.

The second Mandela effect on my psyche, was his outright refusal, after serving some 20 years of his eventual 27 year term of imprisonment, to be released conditionally.

He was informed by the Apartheid prison authorities, “Mr. Mandela, you have proven your point, you have done more for your country than anyone else in history has, you deserve to spend your remaining years enjoying a life of comfort and relaxation with your wife and children on the outside.”

“Simply sign this piece of paper indicating that you would ‘behave yourself’, and not give the state anymore headaches in the future, and you would be released from imprisonment forthwith”.

History records, that Mr. Mandela’s response to this offer of leniency with strings attached, was to ask his jailers to escort him back to his cell, without further ado.

The third Mandela effect was Mr. Mandela insistence, that his prison warder, the man who supervised his imprisonment on Robben Island, be invited to his swearing in ceremony as President of South Africa.

Mr. Mandela insisted that his former jailer was to be seated in the front row seats for the ceremony at hand. This thought process is evident of a visionary soul who had disassociated himself from personal considerations, and had comprehended the totality of the bigger picture called life.

I firmly believe that Nelson Mandela’s legacy to the world at large, would be the lesson, that the journey of life is comprised of not one, but numerous interwoven pathways. He clearly believed that a person should fight long and hard with an unshakable conviction to accomplish their lifetime objectives, as he had done.

But at the point of realising one’s dream, he also understood that we must at least attempt to take a step back to re-assess where we are at that given point of the journey, and then, be big enough to transcend a contemporary situation, like finding the capacity within our hearts to make the decision to forgive an old enemy.

Roger Byer

The hundred days have come and gone

‘There is none so blind that would not see’. That statement bothers me deeply as I realise that we are a people grouping blindly for we know not what! We cannot identify what we want; no vision of where we ought to go, nor direction how to get there; no idea of what is substance nor what is ether or ephemeral.

On the contrary we have become a me-too nation growing a copy-cat generation, willing slaves to American TV and addicts of cell phone and Digicel gadgets, great at pushing buttons and viewing garbage or unable to think and carry on a sensible conversation.

Hence they become easy prey to the manipulative politicians who understand their vulnerability so will promise them they will deliver them on earth. So when Keith Mitchell promised them jobs and prosperity, they rewarded him with a sweep of the constituencies; how pitiful in their simplicity.

I left for New York on the Saturday of the election week. I voted for the NDC as I did on the previous election; not because I really cared for the NDC but under Tillman Thomas I felt they were the lesser of the two evils.

I was shocked and quite disappointed that Mitchell had won all fifteen seats. When one recalls, ‘The Pirate of Prague’ ‘The Stadium deal’, ‘The Call Centre Debacle, The Resteiner Show’, any of which is sufficient evidence to keep the good Doctor as far away from government as is humanly possible.

In my opinion this election amounts to putting the Manicou in the kitchen coup. But the people like him, ‘ he done a lot’. A lot for whom? A lot for Mitchell, his family and his minions? But we unsuspecting, trusting people believe he is working for Grenada.

I can tell you my dear brothers and sisters, Mitchell does not give a rat’s tail about the welfare and development of this dear land of ours. He is a skilled, astute but devious politician.

Everything he did in his previous thirteen years in office was for psychological reasons to dupe the electorate and to promote his image as a doer. Doer of what? He destroyed the flora and fauna of the Botanical Gardens and turned it into a toxic dump of glass and concrete, like the Perseverance dump of which he is tangentially responsible; the stadium, a white elephant.

Give me a break! I like the man but fear his intentions. ‘Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me’.

As I recall, looking at him on MTV the Monday night when he delivered his final appeal to the nation before the election on Tuesday, he was supreme in his address, saying all the right things, making all the grand promises.

Just listening to him would convince everyone to vote for the NNP. But if you were looking at him, with the body language and his contorted face you would run from him far and as far as possible.

I tend to pick up vibration fairly well (my mother’s gift and my acute 6th sense) and as I looked at Mitchell in his deliberate and deceitful address to the nation my hair stood on end. I felt I was experiencing an embodiment of evil. He was playing with the trust and emotion of the people and he knew it.

A word of caution here. Manipulation of the electorate and frivolity of the people’s trust has its metapyshical consequence; it is called Karma. It works as slowly but as surely as the sun rises.

Herbert Blaize described it as ‘what goes around, comes around’. Blaize must have been thinking about Caesar and Brutus. Truth is imperishable – man’s best armour.

Talking about Caesar and Brutus, most of our politicians like Maurice Bishop, Bernard Coard and their cohorts who were blinded in their drive for power; and at present Michael Baptiste, Patrick Antoine and Peter David who are not committed to any ideal and would trade their souls for the Prime Ministership.

All these guys are really caricatures of one of the most noble professions. Patriotism does not exist in their vocabulary. Money from any source and power by any means is their ultimate goal. Truth, honesty and decency do violence to their way of life.

And talking about way of life, ‘I would not exchange one country farmer for any five of them. To quote Jonathan Swift, ‘whoever could make two ears of corn or two blades of grass, to grow upon a spot of earth where only one grew before’ would deserve better of mankind and do more essential service to his country, than the whole race of politicians put together’

The first hundred days have come and gone. I did not expect much from the many promises. I know that Karma has set in. He has returned to the sty he created during the thirteen years of his previous administration and his job to clean up the mess.

It is quite doubtful that his singular feat in choosing a decent lady as Governor General is enough to ‘clean the lipstick from the pig’

There are seventeen hundred and twenty-five days left. I appeal to all who truly love this beautiful country of ours, as Mott Green, an American, loved it, please pray with me that the curse we brought on ourselves be lifted.

God loves this land and remember more things are wroth by prayer than the world dreams of’.

Dennis Canning

 

The Marina project in Carriacou

I write with concern regarding the proposed re start of the marina project at Tyrell Bay on Carriacou. Whilst I confess that I am not a Grenadian resident, I visit Carriacou as often as I can and have watched the development of the marina with some interest.

I should also admit that as a visitor but not one of the yachting fraternity I was quite worried about what this development would do to the environment and ecology of the island.

However, when work started I hoped that the project would be finished as soon as possible but when the work stopped my worry then was that there would be an area of wasteland with various items of plant and machinery left to rot away.

News now is that the developers are to return to the site to continue with the project. Given that the land was left almost derelict this news was welcome in that the project would finally be finished.

However there now seems to be an agreement between the Government and the developers regarding the re start of the project.

News reports seem to be saying that the original project was stopped by the developers because the previous NDC Government would not allow them to develop a further 7 1/2 acres of the island.

I suppose it would be safe to assume the NNP Government has now granted permission for the further development of the marina.

I would therefore like to know the answers to the following questions.

 

(1). It is alleged that the NDC government refused the further development on other than legitimate grounds. What was the reason for the refusal?

 

(2). The existing development lies between the mangrove area which I think is a protected area and the sea on the other side so where exactly are the 7 1/2 acres?

 

(3). On what basis has the land been made available, has it been sold, if so for how much, has it been leased, if so for how much or is there another deal for the use of the land, if so what is it?

 

(4). Have the people of Carriacou been consulted on the expansion of the project?

 

(5). Have the government been made aware of what the plans actually are in detail?

 

(6). Has there been an assessment carried out on the environmental/ecological effects on Tyrell Bay/Harvey Vale? If so what were the results, if not, why not?

 

Wat Tyler

Treatment of Ministers on Labour Day

Please someone tell me what is wrong with our society. Every May Day as far back as I can remember the Ministers are booed while making their presentations. This is a matter that must be addressed urgently and in a serious way. Is it the correct thing for members of the unions to be doing?

I strongly believe that it is wrong and should be stopped immediately. There is no place in our society for such action by professionals. An apology should be sent to the Minister by the T.U.C.

Teachers, how will you feel to be in front of your class and the children are booing you? Public workers, how will you feel to be talking to your subordinates and they are booing you? What examples are we showing to the children of this nation? Is that the example we want them to follow? This action shows them how to be disrespectful to those in authority.

The trade unions in Trinidad take a decision not to invite any government official to Labour Day celebrations on June 19. I believe that this is a principled position. The unions have issues with the government. Instead of inviting the Minister and booing the individual, they did not invite anyone at all.

The T.U.C should do likewise and not invite the Minister. We all have issues with friends, relatives, family members, bosses and politicians. What actions do we take? Should we solicit support to boo them whenever the opportunity presents itself?

The answer in no. It is wrong, unprincipled and very much in bad taste – that form of protest.

Teachers, public officers and other workers, by your actions you are aiding and abetting the demise of disrespect in our society. Don’t get me wrong because not every teacher or worker is guilty of this action.

Brothers and sisters, we must draw the line. We can and must do better if the society has to succeed. We must be good examples to the younger ones in how we talk, dress, walk and conduct ourselves generally. We will be judged by the standard of our behaviour.

I am amazed that no one (media, civil society, T.U.C or the politicians) saw it fit to address this matter in a serious way.

Union members, tell Grenada if it right for you to invite someone to your house and allow your friends or children to boo them while they are speaking? This is insulting and morally wrong. Unions, are you condoning this type of behavior? If so shame on you.

The T.U.C should make a statement on the matter. MAY GOD CONTINUE TO BLESS THIS GREAT LITTLE NATION OF OURS

 

Hawk Eye

 

Declare the GOC elections void!!!

Three weeks have passed since the Grenada Olympic Committee (GOC) held its 2013 Special Quadrennial General Meetings for Elections (SQGM) and it seems to me that only a handful of Grenadians are seriously concerned about the future of our sports men and women, based on our seemingly lack of interest in condemning the Elections which were undoubtedly conducted in a shady, corrupt and unconstitutionally manner.

Over the past two decades millions of dollars have been spent on Sports Policy, Sports Administration, Officiating and Coaching Courses, Athletes Development Programs including foreign and local athletes. What has been the return on our investment?

Tiny Grenada is once again in the spotlight worldwide in Track and Field due to the achievements and exploits of Kirani James but our fears continue with regards to management and care of our other athletes.

Grenada was in the Spotlight in 2003-2004 when Alleyne Francique was tipped to be Grenada’s 1st World & Olympic Champ. That did not come to fruition. However since Francique has gone on to be a successful University Track Coach in the USA, Kirani has raised the bar to the highest level.

But what about Athletes Kurt Felix and Rondell Bartholomew who were injured last year? What about the other 400m runners who were pressured to qualify for the 4×400 without proper supervision and management? What about our female foreign based Track and Field athletes who continue to cry out for financial support?

What do we expect from Esau Simpson in swimming and Andrea St. Bernard in Taekwondo? Are they preparing for better performances in 2013 with their sights on Brazil 2016?

I conclude by asking all Presidents of our national associations to Man Up! And Woman Up! Put the interests of our Athletes in front. Demand that the GOC Executive do the right thing. Declare the May 25, 2013 SQGM Void.

Call the 2013 AGM before the end of July. Give the Associations time to properly prepare for the SQGM and if the same officials are returned to office so be it.

Grenadians will then better appreciate and support the GOC.

George ‘Goaty” Robinson

 

 

 

The abused and forgotten youth

“A lesson in hypocrisy 101.1”

The scene outside courthouses at any parish in Grenada tells a troubling and sad story about the life of “Grenada’s abused and forgotten youth” – the harsh, shameful truth – a story of denial, and confusion.

Many stand alone shaking with fear, others with the pseudo gangland style macho image that instantly vanishes before a Magistrate. With no parent, no guardian, no legal counsel, it’s no bail and more jail.

The preoccupation with material things: new electronic gadgetry, upmarket telephones, exotic cars, and a life of luxury are the “Children of Modern Day parents.”

Many 21st Century “chic parents” have lost their bearings in the haze of modern technology; blinded by the thick “smog of materialism,” they abandon the search for straying birth children, leaving them lost and alone to fend for themselves in the cold and inhospitable world of reality

The desperate and horrifying din from helpless souls crying for help never reaches telephone obsessed and texting addicted contemporary parents who isolate themselves in a universe of electronic fantasy.

Pandemonium followed by waning cries sinking to oblivion breeds new defiant and destructive children born in a dark world where, the primitive instinct – survival of the fittest – is nature’s just law.

Youth of the new generation react in and to a social environment over which they have no control – created by and inherited from “human puppets,” influenced by modern scientific invention, cultivated capitalistic mentality, and primary investment in – not so subtle – psychic manipulation of vulnerable youthful parents who succumb to the temptation of materialism at the cost of home and family.

It is no accident of fate that Frenchmen speak French, Englishmen speak English and that the various peoples of the nations of Africa speak the languages and exhibit the mannerisms common to their respective communities; they react to the environment in which they were groomed.

Changes occur only when they embrace the opportunity whether by chance or design to be indoctrinated in new cultural surroundings.

Our youth, as human beings are no different – they have the same emotions, feel the pain of indifference to their needs and know when they are ignored and rejected; they live at the fringes of society, abide by no law and become hardened in prison – cages unfit for animals.

And suspicious of authority that, for the most part, labels them as unambitious lazy loafers content to live a life of drugs, crime and violence, the rage within intensifies. They are lost – live fast and die young!

We should all bow our heads in shame! When we crave the things that the youth desire, when we secretly live the life we condemn; when we have low or no moral standards, when we scheme and cheat to be and have the best; when we have no limits to our greed, when we make a mockery of church to show off our new garments; when prayer is a ritual with no feeling or meaning, when we have lost all humility and compassion – how dare we now have the gumption to condemn the youth for following our footsteps!

A lesson in hypocrisy 101.1

 

Kit Stonewalling

 

The greatest weapons of our politicians are often lies

 

Recently in Barbados, in delivering the annual Errol Barrow lecture, Dr. Frank Alleyne, a top Barbadian economist, stressed the importance of small Caribbean states, developing what he referred to as an intelligent population, for the development of self-sufficient economies.

In saying this, Dr. Alleyne was quick to point out what he meant by an intelligent population was not being merely certificated, but having the ability to analyse issues, which to my mind would include the willingness to do self analysis and be self-critical.

He lamented that our economies were still too structurally dependent on those of the developed world, such that what happened in the developed world affected us, often adversely.

Dr. Alleyne was mindful of the fact that this structural dependence was due in part to the fact that we were producing less than the 1950s and 1960s. He believed that we were less structually dependent then because of the uncommon common sense of our fore-parents who worked harder, and who created indigenous institutions such as the Post Office Savings Bank.

Dr. Alleyne lamented the fact that in Barbados at the moment, few of the Commercial banks were Barbadian. Dr. Alleyne’s road map for the development of small Caribbean states then, would include an “intelligent population”, uncommon common sense, greater productivity and the creation of indigenous financial institutions.

Dr. Alleyne, not being a politician, could tell us things like these, which we hardly hear from our politicians. They say politics is war by other means, and in their partisan wars, the greatest weapons of our politicians are often lies, pretensions and play-acting, which they impose on us, often with the help of their friends and supporters in the media.

It is said that generally in the world, many people see lying as the key to gain popularity and influence with, and power over others. So they regard telling the truth as something very dangerous. Tell the truth they say and you are a lost man. For instance, you won’t be able to win elections this way.

But lying is not being fair and just to others. Lying is a way to cheat others mentally and otherwise. Lying is key to promoting and maintaining injustice. And lying is not what we tell others, but also what we choose to conceal from them. In other words, we can perpetrate the most dangerous falsehoods by the sin of omission.

Lying is a way of placing obstacles in people’s way, so that they are unable to come to terms with themselves, their poverty, their priorities, their oppression and exploitation.

Lying often defines a relationship in which the powerful diminishes the potential of the weak, impose on them a low self-awareness, for instance, and deconstruct their belonging identity. Lies are often couched in terms that are sensational in order to mask the truth.

And this sensationalism, like our present carnival-style election campaigns, discourages meditation and deliberation. Often, if we repeat the same lie often enough, we begin to believe that it is the truth. Our pretensions or play-acting is lying by other means.

There are many people who would support the view that in Grenada, national elections, like carnival should be held every year. And so would our politicians. Many of them talk about developing our human resource, but most of them seem more interested in perpetuating an “electocracy”, rather than in creating a truly mature democratic society.

Few of them seem to know the extent to which education is vital for this. They seem not to know also, that not only must we possess an “intelligent” population in order to sustain democracy, but that for people like us with an enslaved and colonised past, our education system must be geared for change as well as to edify and dignify us.

Mr. Tillman Thomas, serious demands that our political leaders be accountable in government, can come only when we, by and large, possess a population which can analyse issues, and which is capable of understanding who really possess political power.

And in the last thirty years or so I cannot remember hearing you say or do anything to suggest, that you differ from those who feel uncomfortable with the idea of educating the man in the street, and so would prefer to work with them just how they are.

Mr. Thomas, what percentage of Grenadians who voted for the New National Party and the National Democratic Congress in February, really understand what is meant by or is interested in the accountability of our politicians?

In the fullness of time, people reap what they sow. And he, who sows a little, reaps a little and he, who sows the wind, reaps the whirlwind.

 

Devonson La Mothe

What democracy is at stake?

After reading the article published in a number of weeklies under a similar title written in the affirmative, I must confess that it left me and I am sure many others in a state of astonishment. Presumably the same feeling a large number of devotees of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) felt after the result of the February 19, 2013 election was announced.

The heading is not only utterly misleading but speaks directly to the state of paranoia which existed in Grenada over the past 4 1⁄2 years, something the majority of Grenadians decided they wanted no part of.

According to my dictionary definition of the word DEMOCRACY, it declares: “A system of government by the whole population or all the eligible members of a state, typically through elected representatives.”

If decent memory would be on my side, all the voters who decided to participate in the February 19 general election were all eligible! Which part of this scenario was estranged to the author of that spurious writing? Plain and simple the government was democratically elected! Put that in your whistle and blow it comrade.

I am still here in an attempt to envision how this writer and the few who may be of like ilk have interpreted the closure of Parliament which the past Prime Minister said was meant “to protect our democracy.” Are these idiots for real? He must have been skydiving while writing the article….LOL

So what about the case where public workers were repeatedly paid late and the Office of the Prime Minister was not even appraised of the situation prior to it happening? Tillman Thomas said his Finance Minister did not make him aware. I am wondering what else the then Minister knew that the Prime Minister was not made aware?

To juxtapose Dr Mitchell against the likes of Adolf Hitler, Karl Marx et al., is not just preposterous but helps to illuminate the lunacy which exists in the minds of those haters of the man who has been the longest serving Prime Minister of Grenada and the only Prime Minister in the Commonwealth to have ever been elected to Parliament and have won all the available seats on two occasions.

Democracy at stake! Writing an article armed with so many subtle antagonisms does not change the facts of this one-sided debate.

The NDC equipped with so many legal minds in its Cabinet thought it wise to create legislation to cover for their political appointees. The then Leader of Government Business in the lower house, Nazim Burke said, “the same way he will not want to have Mitchell’s appointments they will make it easy on a new government to get rid of all such workers.”

The essence of the legislation is that whenever an election is called the termination clause of these contracts immediately takes effect.

All workers under the then Prime Ministers’ ministry were given notice of the termination of their contracts immediately, on the working day following the last election. This happened even before a Cabinet was sworn in. Who then was responsible for sending home workers?

Contrary to some belief quite a number of these workers were still allowed to continue under the new government.

Masquerader question! Can the former Minister tell the nation how was he able to amass so much in such a little time, during a period when he himself described it as the greatest recession since his great grandmother lived? Maybe if it was not so well disguised then more persons would have bought into the idea of him being the best Finance Minister in the region.

Dr. Mitchell campaigned on the promise of inclusion and so far he has stuck to his word much to the dismay of some. You see, Dr Mitchell was the one who assuredly said that if he had to do it all over it was going to be done differently.

This new era must be done within the context of wisdom and caution since a few NDC supporters are openly hostile towards the newly democratically elected government.

Under these prevailing circumstances one cannot help but accept those who are willing to work and shares the vision of the new government. Good human resource management will dictate that.

With unemployment what it is the human resource options available to government are varied and competitive. The inclusions of former Minister Karl Hood and Derrick James to diplomatic postings are good examples of this new thrust of participatory democracy.

The office of the Governor General is another one of those brilliant choices made by our new Prime Minister. Being Grenada’s first female to hold the office she has certainly brought with her a taste Grenadians both locally and abroad relishes.

Democracy in Grenada is alive and well. The arms of our state remain robust and unrestricted in light of our present prevailing circumstances. The dark days of old are behind us and Grenadians are looking forward to the hope that the change of government on February 19 has brought with it.

Julius Gabriel