Wed | Sep 19, 2018

Enough with the tall tales, Julian

Published:Thursday | August 23, 2018 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Recent releases issued by the opposition People's National Party (PNP) have brought into sharp focus the sad state of affairs within our country as it relates to the dissemination of information.

It seems one only needs a position of influence and an Internet connection or minutes on their mobile phone to be given a national platform; neither the messenger nor the gatekeeper seems to have any regard for the truth.

I speak specifically of the People's National Party's recent unfounded assertions regarding the Universal Service Fund (USF).

The opposition spokesperson on technology is contending that there was a deliberate move by the current chairman of the USF to remove the national telecommunications companies from the agency's board of management to reduce the agency's 'levels of accountability and scrutiny'.

Such assertions are ludicrous at best and downright malicious at worst. A simple probe using the search engine Google would have revealed that up to the last appointment of a USF board in 2016, both telecommunications service providers were included. The more sophisticated among us could get such information through a simple access to information request or a phone call to the agency.

It is also ridiculous for Mr Robinson to call for the chairman to answer questions related to the composition of the board for the simple, logical, and one would think obvious reason that the chairman does not appoint the board, as Mr Robinson, who has previously acted in the capacity of minister, should be well aware.

And if Mr Robinson does have information that neither of the telecoms is on the board, is it fair to somersault to the conclusion that there is a nefarious plot in motion that has led to this? Isn't it possible that these individuals could have resigned from their organisations, which would mean they would no longer be eligible to sit on the board? Why cast aspersions and sully the good name of individuals committed to the public service simply to score political points? Is the PNP so desperate that they must resort to such tactics to stand a fighting chance?

We who know better must do better! Enough with the tall tales, Julian, Jamaica has had it!

Maria Bernard