The New Today

Letters

The much needed conversation

Can the Government’s transformational agenda for Grenada work without updating the rules of governance?

There is lots of talk these days about transforming Grenada as the PRG tried to do between 1979 and 1983.

But please, let’s remind ourselves, in order to start the transformation, the PRG suspended the constitution of Grenada, and governed by people’s laws as needed.

The question then becomes, how do we accomplish permanent transformation without updating the rules that will allow for accountable transparent government?

Over the last 40 years we have survived a period where the following have become normal practice:

* A suspended constitution and People’s laws as we needed them.

* The perception of Corrupt practice and kickbacks to political parties, where it’s normal to expect a 10% commission on capital projects.

* Eat a food for family, friends, loyal supporters and jobs for the boys

* No Debates on national issues during election season.

* Entertainment, money in t-shirts, fixing roads, drains and walls that go nowhere at election time.

* No respect for the decisions of the courts,

* No respect for the rights of the citizen, because public officers and politicians are not held personally responsible when they lose in courts.

* A depleted public service, with a disfunctional Public Service Commission.

*A police force that is very politically divided between green and yellow and people proudly wear arm bands of green and yellow to identify their allegiance and loyalty.

* Endemic squatting in public spaces, seriously affecting the flow of traffic in many places around the island.

* Signs of addictive gambling, ETC. ETC…….

What rules do we need to update:

* The constitution

* Elections laws including campaign financing, accountable political parties, debates on national issues and prerequisites to run for public office.

* Integrity in public life for public officers and politicians with an appropriate investigation arm and serious sanctions.

* And any other rules that would protect future generations from corrupt individuals

* Rules that protect us from the use and abuse of the internet that can cause social disruption

I submit that the quicker we start this conversation the more likely we are to succeed with this needed transformational agenda.

Footnote: Any attempt to memorialise the Revolution in

the future should consider including the following:

(1). the names of The Central Committee members (the only democratic organisation in Grenada at the time) who voted for Joint Leadership, which led to the murder of Maurice Bishop and his comrades;

(2). The people found guilty of that crime;

(3). The many vocal supporters who up to today still believe that Bishop was wrong not to go along with the Central Committee’s decision, and are trying to influence the historical details.

Brian Pitt