Forgive, don't berate
The Editor, Sir:
I join with my fellow Jamaicans in expressing disappointment at the admission of the prime minister of his role in authorising the hiring of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips to lobby the US government in the 'Dudus' affair. I, however, refrain from castigating him, as I seek to understand the reasons for his actions in this matter. Much as I deplore his falling into this mire, I want to applaud his candour in admitting to his involvement. When last has any public official, much less a prime minister, admitted publicly to wrong, error or misjudgement in anything?
Do we still believe in admitting to wrong, confession, repentance and forgiveness? Is our disappointment due to our displeasure that he has fallen short of our trust? Or are we happy to pull him down a peg from his pedestal? We ought to remember that like us, he is but man.
I choose to believe that he meant well, and may still desire to right the wrongs of past entanglements of his party with criminality, gunmen, and garrison politics. I want to give him the benefit of the doubt that he can still help to remove dons, and dismantle garrisons. Who best to entrust this job to than one who has expressed his personal abhorrence of these, and has found out how difficult a job it is to do? Shouldn't we allow him now, chastened as he ought to be by the fallibility of his own humanity, a second chance to right his wrong by trying to bring about this end?
Personally, I see no one else I would rather trust with the mandate to accomplish what he says he wants to do. He must now realise his need to trust to the aid of Almighty God to give enablement for the task. Let us all get behind him with our prayers and encouragement to this end, not show our self-righteousness at his fall from grace
He has proven he is only human, let us help him rise now "On stepping stones of our dead selves to higher things."
I am, etc.,
LLOYD A. COOKE
Royal Flat, Manchester
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