Sunday Brew — February 10, 2019Sunday, February 10, 2019
BY HG HELPS
Dr Bloomfield's death - what's the real story?
All well-thinking people must be upset by the death of Member of Parliament for Portland Eastern, Dr Lynvale Bloomfield.
The manner in which he was killed was vicious, even hienous. It is more than a week now and the police have yet to disclose (not determine) the motive behind the murder, and give the public an official position on what really transpired.
In the meantime, speculation remains rife about how he died, the condition that he was found in, among other things. And Jamaica's name, mainly abroad, is again being splashed all over as the murder capital, per capita, of the globe, and how serious crime is getting because of the execution of a legislator. That should not be so. The police are well equipped with the relevant information to disclose and declare the true story. It must be told. We cannot continue to keep certain things in the closet forever.
Based upon trends over the years, certain irregular habits and conduct end in bizarre fashion, when things don't go the way that some expect them to.
Come on investigators! Do the right thing. Save the nation some more embarrassment by saying what really happened. You who visited the crime scene know very well what transpired. It's time to get it off your chests once and for all.
The shooting of that bus driver in Spalding
If the driver of that minibus who 'chucked' the policeman after he was signalled to stop during a spot check in Spalding, Manchester (some argue Clarendon) had been killed, he would not have had my sympathy.
I continue to state that minibus and taxi drivers are the most dangerous set that we have in this island. Right now, they may be even more dangerous than gunmen.
The policeman was clearly attacked, thanks to a video shown via the dangerous social media, and he responded in a conscious manner by shooting his attacker in self defence. The fellow who pushed the policeman was lucky that he did not confront one of those cops who love to give work to undertakers.
The time has come. Drivers of public passenger vehicles have been virtually getting away with murder for too long. The police need to start throwing them in jail for those vicious road violations - the kind that present clear danger to sober road users.
These road hogs and hooligans believe that they are always correct ... that they have a divine right to make the lives of other people a living hell. Some are cowards, others are foolish. If they haven't learnt from the Spalding incident then nothing will change.
I remember a few weeks ago when one of those hooligans attacked my friend whom he 'bad drive'. He went further. He blocked the path of my friend's vehicle, jumped from his taxi and proceeded to walk towards my friend's car. But then my friend was alert. He pulled his revolver which resulted in the taxi hooligan sprinting all the way up the road faster than Bolt, leaving his passengers in abandonment.
Look at those school board chairmen
There is a critical need for the Ministry of Education to take another look at the quality of 'leadership' that is provided by politically-appointed chairmen of school boards across the island.
The stories are at times unbelievable about how board chairmen interfere in the day-to-day running of schools. Armed with their party colours, the board chairmen often behave as if they are the trained officials - the chief executive officers, or principals if you may - of these institutions, with many of them totally ignorant of what it takes to run them.
They often try to intimidate principals and take away their authority from them. How, for example, can a board chairman deploy staff at a school, any school? This rubbish must stop.
Let me see if Ruel Reid can lead the way in effecting the kind of change that is needed, by starting the process of disqualiying all political activists from chairing any school board. The first mission when seeking anyone to chair a board is to search for someone who has experience in the classsroom - like a retired principal or teacher - who, naturally, is not painted orange or green. Maybe you will never achieve that everywhere you go, but it could be one criterion that could get the train rolling.
Too many political half wits are chairing school boards and trying to run them in their own style. Maybe that's why we are getting the kind of results that some schools are churning out.
Merlene Ottey certainly not the best
Many have argued, for many years, over which woman athlete is the best that Jamaica has produced.
I have even read recently where it was suggested by one columnist that such an accolade ought to be bestowed upon the head of Merlene Ottey, the former Jamaica runner who opted for Slovenia as her home and country of representation later in life.
I have one simple question though: What makes Merele Ottey great, let alone naming her as Jamaica's greatest woman athlete ever?
My records show that Ottey has won only one individual gold medal, in the 200 metres, at a major international event - the IAAF World Championships. She has never won an Olympic Games gold medal.
Please do not tell me about her grand prix or Diamond League successes. They are one-off races which only mean much to the athletes' pockets. The real test is to demonstrate your true worth at the World Championship or Olympic Games level, going through the rounds and showing who is boss. Ottey virtually flopped at both.
How any clear thinking person can put her ahead of Veronica Campbell Brown, the natural queen of the track, is beyond me. Ottey's international record cannot even match up to Shelly Fraser Pryce's. So what's the big deal?
Ottey's disciples need to come better. And don't tell me about her durability, track longevity or rampant use of drugs by some of the leading athletes at the time of her race-by-race dominance. Remember that Ottey was cited for a drug violation, accused of taking the steroid nandrolone. She was cleared, happily, thanks to the small team of legal experts led by the legendary Jamaican, Dr Lloyd Barnett, to whom proper thanks has not been offered. The team essentially pointed out flaws in the testing procedure and showed how decay could have set in with the samples. That will never happen again, not under a more alert IAAF.