Obfuscating the facts with the deafening noise of trivia

leadershipIt is very sad for me to write my last article before Christmas 2018 in a less than happy and hopeful way. It is a time of family, friends, the future, and faith, which we all look forward to.

The four Fs remind us that, as citizens there is a duty to maintain a harmonious relationship with our fellow human beings so as not to render the nation to the downsides of warlike behaviours.

Decorum is a word that describes behaviours that are appropriate to varying environments, including behaviours, utterances, including public places and Parliament. In the past few days, our elected officials have continued to exhibit inappropriate behaviour within Gordon House in both committee and full sitting. This charade of clownish behaviour must stop, but it will not unless a large number of voters send a strong message to both parties (Barnum and Bailey).

Propriety has no meaning to those members of the committee who themselves should be investigating the inappropriate expenditures related to Petrojam. Petrojam has exhibited tendencies towards the disregard of several rules and regulations and has sought to obscure its activities by “dragging red herring across the trail”.

This is a case that ought to be about right and wrong, black or white, and is definitely not about a cake, chocolate or otherwise, (by the way was it local or imported chocolate?). The thorough investigation required will open all eyes that have previously been closed to the fact that Government systems and procedures are severely flawed (if they ever get around to having it done).

In the matter of the appointment of the HR Manager, the salary scale would be generally above a second-tier manager in the private sector, and possibly only below the top HR Director in a very large company or conglomerate. Thus, based on a comparison with the private sector this would be out of scale and worse so if based on qualifications, years of experience, or other criteria such as proven networks or influence.

The entire system opens the opportunity for malleability, theft, and corruption, and this is at least partly due to inability of employees, lack of suitable experience, and ignorance of the best practices. As an example, where else in the world could a tax office tell you that you can’t pay your car registration that is up in December, during the month of November and you must come back? This is either stupidity or madness! Waste one more productive day to pay revenue to a Government that desperately needs it (or so they said before tasting chocolate cake and chased down with MPP). So systems of management control must come up for scrutiny.

The predictable responses of the Government and Opposition fit right in their past actions that intentionally obfuscate the facts by the deafening noise of their trivia. We the unsuspecting citizens listen to the diatribe as do the media, until the music changes to a new song.

So irregularities at Petrojam are now superseded by the ignorance of whether a meeting is a meeting and who has the right to call it; and who is out of order and mendacious. So the Speaker of the House is given one week to investigate the meeting issue. Meanwhile the Petrojam forensic audit is in abeyance, and the next week is Christmas followed by New Year celebrations. All will be forgotten and we ring out any thought of Petrojam and ring the New Year with chocolate cake, exotic dancers, and champagne. No need for Wakanda dancers, Buju Banton is back, no more worries.

This so reminds me of the statement of Marie Antoinette when the French peasants were protesting the scarcity of bread: “Let them eat cake.” That careless statement was replied to and said literally: “Off with their heads.”

Quite frankly the Government talks about corporate governance but does little to implement this, and leaves the same loopholes for succeeding generations to drain the public purse. Then they have the nerve to talk about risk management.

Out of all the known areas of possible corruption in energy the answer in descending order would be oil; coal; natural gas; hydroelectricity; solar; and nuclear. So if I am correct that oil is the most corrupt industry, then it should be the area that receives the most audit scrutiny, and the most trustworthy boards, executives, and employees. This is a no-brainer, so leaving the sector to its own devices is a simple invitation to be corrupt.

So no heads will roll; no meaningful action will determine where the oil losses have been going; connected parties/beneficiaries will not be identified; POCA will not be invoked; not one person will go to jail; and all will be well in Jamdown.

Have yourself a Merry Christmas, a Happy New Year, all will be forgiven, and so be of good cheer. And don’t forget “a little more oil in my lamp to keep it burning”.

You can’t pay your car registration that is up in December, during the month of November and you must come back? This is either stupidity or madness! Waste one more productive day to pay revenue to a Government that desperately needs it (or so they said before tasting chocolate cake and chased down with MPP). So systems of management control must come up for scrutiny.

The predictable responses of the Government and Opposition fit right in their past actions that intentionally obfuscate the facts by the deafening noise of their trivia. We the unsuspecting citizens listen to the diatribe as do the media, until the music changes to a new song.

 

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