Sunday Brew - September 19Sunday, September 19, 2021
Floyd Green's tough lesson to learn
Floyd Green was seen by some in the ruling Jamaica Labour Party as fit and proper to become leader of the political organisation, and ultimately prime minister.
He can still achieve both.
But for now, the likeable Member of Parliament for St Elizabeth South Western and just resigned minister of agriculture and fisheries will have to go back into the classroom and digest perhaps the toughest lesson of his life so far. It is sad that something like what we all saw in the social media video, happened to a man like Green, a Munro College boy, lawyer and one committed to the advancement of Jamaica.
But this is one of the setbacks that is contained in life. The sad situation is what was on the video occurs all over the island, though far more clandestine, whenever 'no-movement' days are announced. Again, the real danger of social media showed up fully. When will people learn that getting themselves videotaped and photographed is not something that should be encouraged, especially in today's Jamaica where getting things on Instagram, Twitter, and WhatApp is of paramount importance?
Just look around and you will see: If a man, for example, falls off his motor bike and gets injured, the first thing that passersby will do is start taking pictures and videotaping the accident victim, instead of trying to put him back on his feet and see if he needs medical attention. It is a sorry situation, but, unfortunately, it's where we have reached as a society.
The brilliant fellow that he is, I am sure that Green will absorb this humongous lesson, pick himself up, and re-enter the race of life. In the meantime, he must view what happened to him as something that will act as a guide in the way that he conducts himself, henceforth.
Like he admitted 'I was wrong'. It was a manly effort, and was executed quite swiftly. It is not something that you see every day from parliamentarians, which tells you about the quality individual.
Although Prime Minister Holness has said that he will see if Green can serve in other areas, there should be no rush to reinstate him to the Cabinet, for that would lead to a mockery of justice.
As for the other people involved, well, they too ought to understand what will be expected of them in the future.
Cover-up involved in Rasta locks cutting report?
It has taken too long, and the more the days go by, it adds to the delay of achieving justice.
Two months have passed since Rastafarian young woman Nzinga King accused the police, in particular, a woman who swore to protect, serve, and reassure, of trimming her locks on July 22, at the Four Paths Police Station where she was enrolled as an inmate.
The nation was promised investigations by the Commissioner of Police, INDECOM, and the public defender well over six weeks ago. None has delivered on the promise, although Police Commissioner Major General Antony Anderson has said he has forwarded a report to INDECOM, and Public Defender Arlene Harrison Henry has pointed to pussyfooting by the police, and in one case, an allegation of obstruction of justice by police personnel. It is a sickening situation.
What could be taking so long to arrive at justice? It is just a simple investigation, not one as broad as the Tivoli Gardens incursion of 2010. And the more the days drag on, the more it seems like a grand cover up is amiss.
The delay has led me to believe that there is information that would appear to the public to be quite nasty if it were to be disclosed.
Remember now, we were also told that the young woman was faking the incident, but if that were so, wouldn't it be much easier to determine?
Come on agencies! We waste too much time in this country in trying to get the truth out. The more this go-slow 'investigation' continues, it is the more the public will be inclined to think that the treatment of the young woman by the police, went against all constitutional provisions. It is slack. The public needs to know the story...the true story.
PNP continues to choke itself
Public opinion poll results have been making the rounds lately, which show the Opposition People's National Party (PNP) trailing the governing Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) in popular support, a year after the last general election.
Not a surprise. For while the Jamaica Labour Party Government has flopped in some areas, in particular health care, crime control, and education, it would be silly to assume that the popularity which accompanied the JLP into the September 3, 2020 General Election would simply evaporate so quickly.
What is surprising though, is the continued slow pace by the PNP of repairing the damage done to its fabric last time at the polls. By now the party should have settled down. It has not. By now, candidates should have been pencilled in all constituents. That remains a dream...and here is what people whom I have conversed with have a problem.
They will tell you that there is no voice, apart from the Member of Parliament, which can speak up for them. Why? Well, the PNP has been moving at snail's pace to identify and insert candidates in vacant seats. Not even 'holding', or temporary candidates are to be found. And so, the absence of party flagbearers becomes a challenge.
Maybe the party is waiting to choose its representatives two months before the next general election, when it would be certainly wiped out and passed on to the undertakers.
The party must be reminded that it is there as a watchdog. It does not have to oppose everything that the Government puts forward, for the simple sake of opposing. But it must not only pledge to keep a close watch on governance. It must manifestly demonstrate that.
Follow Barbados prime minister's stance on lockdown
Although the prime minister has relaxed the no-movement regime to one day out of the week now, asking people to stay off the road on Sundays still does not make sense.
Even the police will tell you that the lowest road traffic day is Sunday. So declaring it a no-movement day will not achieve a thing, just like the three-day a week lockdown over the past month failed to do.
Lockdown days, or no-movement days in Jamaica, are mere negatives. When the Government declares that certain days are to be acknowledged as no-movement days, you would expect that traffic on the road would be lighter, far lighter than usual. Not so in some areas. The only thing that you see a reduction of is less dirty driving by taxi operators.
There are now around 55 categories of people who are allowed to be on the road on no-movement days. You would not expect to see traffic jams in certain corridors, but that's what is happening, which makes a mockery of the declaration. What you see, too, is far more people taking advantage of the limited enforcement measures that have been put in place.
Barbados' Prime Minister Mia Mottley continues to show up her other Caribbean colleagues as a leader par excellence. I remember years ago, then leader of the Barbados Labour Party (BLP), Owen Arthur, suggesting that Ms Mottley would lead the BLP, over his dead body. Well, Arthur is no longer with us, and Mottley has stepped forward with vigour to not only win the leadership of the BLP, but guide that political organisation to a whitewash of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) in the last general election.
Regarding lockdowns, Mottley said: “They (DLP) would like us to go back into lockdown. We went into lockdown when it was one of the only options.
“When we locked the country down, the haves in Barbados would stock up, and live comfortably for the two to three-week period, and the have nots would suffer, as we say in Barbados, suck salt. Does the DLP understand the social and economic implications of a lockdown at this time.
“Locking the country down is not and will not be the first, second or third option of this BLP Government,” she said, while preaching the wearing of masks, social distancing, and vaccination.
Say what you want about Mottley's personal or political life, she is a ladder's length ahead of all other heads of Government in the Caribbean. She reminds me, to some extent, of Michael Manley — outspoken, brave and not willing to take foolishness from, especially fools.
Who would have expected Barbados, 'Little England' of all places, to move, ahead of the rest, in pushing to replace the Queen of England as that country's head of State? Well, things are on track for that, while we in Jamaica and other countries continue in the shadow on a monarchy that cares little about its former slave subjects.
Mottley's in effect 'we are not for sale' stance taken against the Trump Administration, while others, including Jamaica's, crawled at the feet of then Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, was one of the boldest moves by a Caribbean political leader. Her examples ought to be followed.
But when you look around, there are too many wimps...those who do not have sufficient balls to stand up and be counted when it comes to defending what's in the best interest of their people.