Flirting with suicide?
The current Government led by Prime Minister Andrew Holness has grown tired of shouldering the responsibility of the nation and is seemingly hell-bent on losing the next general election.
I have come to the above conclusion based on a number of politically suicidal decisions it has taken since the beginning of 2023. The most baffling of these decisions has to be the massive salary increases granted to the political class and the approach adopted in the constitutional amendment to bring the retirement age of the director of public prosecutions (DPP) and the auditor general (AG) in line with the rest of the civil service.
The decision to grant parliamentarians and councillors significant increases can only be understood if the Government is tired of governing or holds the electorate in such contempt it believes the issue will be erased from memory by the next election.
It is interesting that the public’s objection was not to the political class awarding themselves an increase but to the quantum of the increase.
The decision to bring the retirement age of the DPP and the AG in line with the rest of the civil service need not have descended into controversy. It is a logical move, and a non-suicidal Government would have sought consensus with the parliamentary Opposition to ensure the constitutional amendment received unanimous approval. Now we are faced with the real possibility of the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions being brought into disrepute.
The Government appears determined to lose the next election and this determination is aided by its parliamentary majority with which it can bulldoze legislation through.
The only thing more intoxicating to a politician than a crowd of tribal supporters is a huge parliamentary majority. A huge parliamentary majority can breed arrogance and the Government appears to have fallen into the trap.
The People’s National Party (PNP) must be counting its lucky stars the Government is suicidal, as they can always count on it to orchestrate some distraction to divert attention from their leader’s, Mark Golding, intemperate utterances and the party’s divisive candidate selection exercises.
The Government is writing the template on how to be booted from office. They must be suicidal, tired, or both.