Fri | Aug 23, 2019

Letter of the Day | Corruption blame game

Published:Friday | July 19, 2019 | 12:10 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

It is good that more people are now having conversations about corruption and the need to eradicate it from our island, triggered by the recent revelations at the Caribbean Maritime University (CMU) and Petrojam, followed up by the recent People’s National Party (PNP) “Anti-Corruption” event in Half-Way Tree, St Andrew.

However, the current blame-game being carried by both major political parties in Jamaica would be funny if it wasn’t so sad, hollow, and hypocritical.

Both parties and their cronies are guilty of corruption, plundering our financial resources, and using the taxpayer as a feeding tree to enrich a few. None of the two old parties have the moral authority to call the other corrupt. Both of them are jointly culpable and responsible for the billions of dollars that Jamaica has lost through corruption.

The Trafigura scandal (PNP) is no more or no less corrupt than the Petrojam scandal (JLP/PNP). The CMU scandal (Jamaica Labour Party) is no more or no less corrupt than the Cuban light bulb scandal (PNP). Garrison politics practised by both parties is corrupt, criminal, and immoral.

Ultimately, it’s the Jamaican people who pay the price for corruption, in many cases, with our lives.

The privileged friends of the JLP and PNP have benefited from corruption at the expense of the people of Jamaica for many, many years and continue to do so while giving lip service against it whenever they are in Opposition. All they want is their turn at the wicket to stick their snouts into the trough.

In order to end the robbery and gang-raping of Jamaica by the JLPNP, we must change the political system and the ugly culture of corruption. To this end, we must start with a truth and reconciliation commission followed by the constitutional reforms proposed by the National Democratic Movement since our inception in 1995.

We must enforce our laws at all times, regardless of social status and political connection. Jamaica is too rich to be so poor and too beautiful to have such an ugly politics.

We need a fair, just, and equitable society built upon the pillars of merit, pragmatism, and honesty.

Peter Townsend

President, NDM

ndmjamaica@yahoo.com