Sat | Nov 18, 2017

Uphold stance against corruption, says Herbert Gayle

Published:Monday | July 3, 2017 | 12:00 AMJason Cross
Dr Herbert Gayle

Some local individuals in top leadership positions have been accused by social anthropologist Dr Herbert Gayle of not firmly upholding their stance against corruption, which he cited as the major reason for the breakdown in the central political authority.

Gayle was speaking recently at the launch of a Caribbean Policy Research Institute two-year project at the Spanish Court Hotel, New Kingston, aimed at addressing key crime issues rocking Jamaica.

'Collaborating to Transform Citizen Security a Yaad' is the theme of the project.

"We have segmentary factional politics, which implies that a lot of Jamaicans are primarily PNP (People's National Party) or JLP (Jamaica Labour Party) before they are Jamaicans. One of the things you will find out is that you will have a stable country, yet there is segmentary factional politics. When you speak to the police officers on the ground, the police officers will say how effective they were in case filing, 'but there was a failure above me'," he said.

 

NOT OPERATING AS ONE

 

Gayle highlighted that a central authority is usually made up of four different parts that must operate as a fully functioning machine, which currently is not the case.

"Central authority is made up of four parts - the legislature, judiciary, national security and civil society. If you check all four areas, you will find that they are not operating as one machine. It cannot be that somebody at the base or at the third tier does an effective arrest and then the person above makes a phone call that says, 'kindly reverse your action at the base'. That is how central political authority works," he said.

"This is a genuine Caribbean problem. I don't have a problem if your case filing and all of these things were done so shabbily that the persons get off each time. But the details of how these persons get off shows that the central political authority is very fragile. If the central authority is so fragile, then persons will get arrogant and operate within the frame that says it doesn't work," he stressed.