Letters & Opinion

Ossie Boy’s “Petty-coat” Exposed

By Justin T. Charles

As 2017 came to a close and I was giving consideration to my resolutions for 2018, I first decided to reflect on the year that was. As I began my recollections, there were a number of observations that I made that disturbed me. It was in that moment I decided to pen some of my reflections in the hope of sounding an alarm bell and wake everyone from our seeming state of stupAor.

Naturally, those holding the rudder and are responsible for governing and steering our ship of State are on whom my attention was focussed. This was not the time for me to bark at the moon by asking the loyal opposition to perform their roles better. It was a time to challenge all concerned residents and nationals to hold our public officials to a higher standard.

However, lo and behold, the cardboard soldier and perennial reactionary who serves as the General Secretary to the governing United Workers Party, instead of joining the call for higher performance standards from public officials, decided to expose his petty-coat (or is it his petticoat?) by referring to me as a hack.

The sophomoric response of the purported rebuttal, if anything, only amplified the alarm bells. That the notion that I am a “hack” is the extent of his taunt, conjured in my mind the image of a wounded rat, barely able to respond to the pawing of a cat; and I’m not even a kitten.

Mr. General Secretary, I shall allow you to remain in the shallow end of the pool, for if you venture any further you may drown as you attempt to answer whether there were more murders in 1998 or 2017.

You seem to be offering the excuse that IMPACS had something to do with the murder rate in 2017. The famed report was first publicly addressed in March 2015, yet there were only 28 murders in that year and the police noted a 13% decline in reported crime over the preceding year.

During the 2016 election campaign, your political leader promised to keep citizens safe. Page 56 of your party’s 2016 election manifesto promised to deal with IMPACS within 100 days of assuming office. Having already been in office now for over 500 days, you are now saying it will be addressed sometime in 2018. As the dancehall DJ’s would say, “Wheel and come again”. Was it your intent to be either comical or farcical? Bravo, you are succeeding.

On the issue of our selective morality, you implied that social media deliberately incriminated an innocent person. Pray tell, who was the innocent you referred to? The school girl or the Minister? You repeat the banality of the Prime Minister that the morality of our people must be addressed, and yet you continue to ignore the immorality of the Cabinet member.

Your line of reasoning and the nature of your defences is why most persons believe that it was the Saint Lucian Prime Minister to whom Gaston Browne referred to “the no-so-smart Prime Minister”. Should the public interpret your explanation as an indication of your moral flaw/floor? I guess we can safely put you in the column as one of those referring to the “exposed” Minister as “our SOB”.

You’re desperately clutching at the canard of a Grynberg straw by calling on the former Prime Minister to give a candid version of the oil exploration agreement, whilst at the same time celebrating Grenada’s discovery of natural gas in its seabed. Should you not use your energy and influence to have the Government of Saint Lucia expeditiously remove any stumbling block to the production of natural gas from our seabed, thus reducing our importation of fuel and ultimately reducing our energy consumption costs?

Given that you were a member of the Port Council that did not maintain the integrity of the bidding process for the development of the Hewanorra International Airport, I understand why you would not acknowledge what could only be described as either dereliction of duty or co-conspiracy in the matter. Naturally, you’d wish the nation to ignore the report from Offshore Alert and you attempt to deflect by talking about airport plans designed by American Airlines. Nuff said, Sir.

Guided by your comments on the logic of the obscene number of direct awards granted by the acting Prime Minister, on behalf of the Saint Lucian public, I suggest you refund the State for the cost of your participation in the much-talked-about training on board governance provided to government ministers and party honchos.

If the programme was to have been as credible as the PR machinery said it was, then it would/should have addressed the necessity for the establishment and following of rigorous procurement guidelines. Did you not learn that? Then again, if you can ignore bid-rigging in the HIA development, it would be shocking to discover that you would have a problem with the manner of the direct awards granted.

I am truly worried that the stitches that tie us together as a nation are coming undone, and the centre may not hold. As a consequence, Mr. General Secretary, you should be concerned that not only will petticoats be exposed, but that they will also come down.

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