Sat | Mar 24, 2018

Thwaites' commentary mean-spirited

Published:Tuesday | December 12, 2017 | 12:00 AM


It is with a heavy heart that I pen this response after reading Daniel Thwaites' column 'Sorry, not sorry' (Sunday Gleaner, December 10, 2017) I have to ask myself when Jamaica will progress.

The events of Dudus's apprehension are regrettable, but one must ask what events led us to this debacle. Obviously, Mr Thwaites sees this as a one-sided affair, with blame to be placed squarely at the feet of the Jamaica Labour Party. Daniel's tirade seems to be sparked by an attempt to outmanoeuvre the current prime minister, Andrew Holness, and the author has apparently forgotten the following salient issues at the time, as well as others leading up to Dudus' apprehension.

1. Dudus' extradition was thwarted by misinformation, failure to follow the established laws of Jamaica, the treasonous activities of a previous minister of national security, and an attempt to reduce social upheaval and loss of life.

2. The dismantling of garrisons has been attempted on more than one occasion. While this process has been carried out by one political party, the other political party has failed to follow suit.

3. Historically, the creation of garrisons and the emergence of individuals such as Dudus have caused social oppression and economic inequality, perpetrated by both political parties with the sole purpose of gaining power. The end result has been events such as the 1970s violence, and, most recently, the west Kingston firefights of 2010.

The honourable prime minister, in attempting to right a wrong, has offered an apology. The rambling of Mr Thwaites has sought to dishonour this attempt in a manner that is most distasteful and dishonest. In fact, from the issues mentioned above, Daniel Thwaites needs to apologise to the Jamaican public for his rants.

A ray of hope from the Dudus issue is that all extraditions thereafter appear to have followed the correct legal protocol and have been processed expeditiously, thus reducing the possibility of social upheaval.