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The Patriotic Vine… Corrupt recklessness

If the regime does not know the times, it cannot know what is good for Grenada!

After several months of struggling to contain COVID-19 here in Grenada, and with access to regional and global information on the experiences of others, how can the Government of Grenada be caught negligently sleeping at the wheels?

It is plain common sense that protocols are as good as their consistent and impartial implementation, monitoring, evaluation, and reporting. The manpower and management systems are available, the leadership is absent. What else explains the Prime Minister’s statement that, “we have already committed to revisiting the protocols”? Supposedly, the problem was due to poorly – designed and ineffective protocols. Really? Was the protocols space not contaminated by political interests and judgments?

On that wrong-headed premise, the Prime Minister proceeds to talk about determining the nature of the breakdown and having a meeting with the owners of Sandals Grenada. In doing so, the PM exposed the extreme recklessness with which the matter of the resumption of the tourist trade has been treated. Supposedly defective design of protocols; no monitoring; no evaluation; no reporting on performance activities at hotels!

So, the GTA is sleeping and so too is the Minister for Tourism. The Ministry of Health is sleeping and so too is the Minister. And is the Prime Minister not sleeping soundly? How can the nation be kept safe in such circumstances? Tourism is a person-to-person contact industry, a simple and fundamental fact, but it carries obligations and is loaded with risks of various kinds.

In the prevailing circumstances, the protocols constitute industry standards. Who must monitor those standards? The GTA! The pay is great but now so too is the pain. A price must be paid.

The nation has been put into crisis mode with rampaging and multiple infections of the disease and potential loss of life. Families are distraught. Wealth cannot assure health. This situation is unpardonable and can only be characterised as the worst case of corrupt recklessness.

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This corrupt mindset is alive and kicking in this statement by the PM, “It is recommended that all sporting, cultural and community-based events should be postponed for the next seven days”! Woiiiii! So, to whom is the recommendation directed? Is it not the duty of Government to impose reasonable measures and restrictions on the citizens at this time in the public interest?

Yes, the speech was poorly composed, but it fits cutely in a habitat of corrupt recklessness. Gather yourself and come back Prime Minister to address the nation on the matter of the conduct of those responsible for keeping Grenada safe at Sandals Grenada. That includes you, Sir.

Tell the people about such an investigation and your resolve to take corrective action. You can meet with Sandals a thousand times and check on the nature of the breakdown another thousand times, that is not a problem-solving intention where it is evident that the root of the problem was official laxity on the part of GTA, Minister for Tourism and the Minister for Health. And you, Prime Minister, as you were not able to say that you had called for and received reports on the conditions at Sandals once you had approved the resumption of business.

It is reckless decision-making that produced the sad situation that might well put the whole of Grenada under siege. There was a fatal failure of leadership. Years of ‘gold dust ‘politics without standards, responsibility or accountability have brought us to this.

We are in weeping times because it is reaping times. It is better leadership that will put things right or near right. Can the people expect that from the Prime Minister? Does he have the moral standing to address the systemic corrupt recklessness?

William Joseph

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