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Strip Gomes of nat'l honour

Published:Friday | June 20, 2014 | 12:00 AM


This is an open letter to the governor general.

Your Excellency,

I write to ask you to consider stripping Dr Carolyn Gomes of the Order of Merit bestowed upon her in 2009. In recent weeks, Dr Gomes has operated like an enemy of the state. In the most recent brouhaha, she showed contempt for due process, for the laws of the land, and for the right of children to their innocence by facilitating the lessons in children's homes of material that most well-thinking people would consider inappropriate and that was explicitly dismissed by the Ministry of Education.

She is also behind the removal of a man who has given years of service to persons living with HIV. She has shown disregard for those persons and their interests by seeking to limit access of those persons to Professor Brendan Bain's expertise via CHART.

The governments of both Jamaica and Trinidad have spent millions of dollars educating and training Professor Bain from early childhood through to the tertiary level. The people of the region should have the widest access to his expertise as long as he is able to offer it. This is how societies benefit from the costly investment in education.

We should not have to deal with the political manoeuvrings of Dr Gomes that caused Professor Bain's dismissal from the University of the West Indies. Further, the reputation of the region's leading university has been sullied and Dr Gomes has managed to turn public opinion against the institution.

She has been reckless, wanton and dishonourable, and for that, I request that the title be removed.