Letters to the Editor

End carnival of corruption

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

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Dear Editor,

As our dear beloved country plunges deeper and deeper into corruption, lawlessness and bad governance I have to ask the pertinent question: Have we given up as a people?

The question is valid as most of our people, institutions and agencies have retreated into questionable silence as our Government, criminals, private sector all run roughshod over the people's right to a better quality of life. This is a democracy that is in accelerated disintegration, as the Government in which we have put our trust is perceived to be involved in some degree of corruption.

Our survival depends on the Government's policies being inclusive, participatory, accountable, and offering a fair chance for people to climb the ladder of wealth. Paradoxically, people are not clutching at the proverbial straw of survival anymore but just allow themselves to drift with the hope of being rescued by some miraculous acts from heaven or some other acts of benevolence. Due to the hope of a miracle our people have lost hope and trust in our Government, justice system, security forces, and other avenues that should take them from despair to hope.

It is not easy for our people to be living in this perpetual downstream of despair, watching in silence from the sidelines as Government and its agents engage in a carnival of corruption. We may not be as bad as Venezuela, Zimbabwe, or Haiti, but we are gradually getting there unless the people awake from their slumber of despair and hopeless and demand that our Government and its agencies are held accountable.

Instead of being transparent and accountable, the Government circumvents accountability and performance tests. If the 57 per cent of the country who refuse to register as electors continue to be mired in apathy, then the Government will continue to perpetuate itself in power not based on its transparency or accountability but by the dangling of the proverbial money-laden carrot in front of vulnerable voters in certain communities.

From a historical perspective the people should not be giving up. We have changed all our governments using the democratic processes. Sound governments led by Sir Alexander Bustamante, Hugh Shearer, Michael Manley, Norman Manley and Portia Simpson Miller were all voted out of power. Nothing lasts forever, and this carnival of corruption, hopelessness and despair must come to end sooner or later.

We cannot defend these levels of corruption by saying it was worse under the previous People's National Party regime; that is no basis for an incumbent to be corrupt.

Fernandez Smith

Former JLP councillor


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