Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 4th 2015 Contents A23
Monday, May 4, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
ON THE WINGS OF THE WIND
An effective local govern-
ment system brings deci-
sion making closer to the
people and by this very char-
acteristic allows for these
decisions to be needs-based.
It fosters the social net-
working that is the premise
of the term social capital.
This term suggests that
individual value is intrinsical-
ly tied to collective value and
inclines people to do things
for each other with the con-
fidence that their doing will
The contradiction in T&T is
that complete power is cen-
tralised in the Government.
Furthermore, for decades,
the State has concentrated
upon itself, all the loyalty and
aspirations of the citizens
through lucrative contracts
for party financiers on one
end of the class spectrum,
and "make work" pro-
grammes on the other. This
is indicated when, at certain
levels, the discourse becomes
pre-emptive attacks by dif-
ferent individuals and groups
to protect their self interests.
Support us and we will take
care of you has become the
focus as the country
descends into crisis.
The benefits of staying in
power appeal to the lower
recalcitrant element of the
mind by reflecting the desire
to escape from the strangle-
hold of financial insecurity
that characterises the life of
the non-aligned citizen.
In so doing, the desire to
hold on to office eclipses
with contradiction, the higher
reasonable element of the
mind that is prepared to obey
the direction of principle.
Pleasure becomes the ruler,
with gratification and indul-
gence of the instinctive
desires of a part of us that
we ought to restrain with law
and rational principles in our
Hence the Huxleyan warn-
ing that people will embrace
and come to love their
oppression---and that which
we come to love will ruin us.
Short term interest serves
one person but affects the
others negatively in the long
Unfortunately, as collective
studies on the subject argue,
you have to expect people to
act in their own self interest
rather than in the interest of
society as a whole.
Therefore a coalition of
individual candidates and
groups whose currents of
thought are not limited by
affiliations to long established
political parties may be our
best chance at reform.
BEST CHOICE FOR GOVT
Dear letter-writers: Please note that before your letter can be published, we must have your full name
and contact details, including a phone number. Your contact information will not be published. Letters
should be no more than 500 words long and may be edited for length and clarity. Kindly e-mail them to:
Why do we need SRPs?
The acting Commissioner of
Police Stephen Williams is reported
as having directed that the recruit-
ment of Special Reserve Police offi-
cers (SRPs) be put on hold immedi-
ately presumably because a number
of unsuitable candidates have
slipped through the recruitment net.
Logical thinking would then
demand that he should also put on
hold the recruitment of regular
police officers because the problem
exists there as well.
The entry requirements for SRPs
are so low as to encourage poor
quality candidates. In addition they
enjoy little respect from the public
because of the perception that they
are not "real" police.
So the action of the acting CoP is
nothing but a knee-jerk reaction
and will not solve the problems that
exist. I am really amazed that with
so many people in T&T with all
manner of degrees, some earned the
hard way, others falsified, that no
one has yet asked the critical ques-
tion: Why in 2015 do we need
SRPs? In the cities of many devel-
oped countries with populations far
exceeding 1.3 million people, there
are no SRPs or their equivalent.
What is it that they know that
we don t? The solution seems so
obvious that we cannot see it: raise
the entry requirements for the reg-
ular police officers while simultane-
ously tightening the recruitment
process; incorporate those SRPs
who are trainable into the regular
police service and put out to pas-
ture those who can t cut it.
Help police to protect
The vast majority in our society
cringes every time we hear that a police
or security officer is shot, killed or injured
in the line of duty. Often, we also hear of
such incidents when such brave officers
are not on duty.
Similar incidents were experienced by
a number of off-duty prisons officers in
the recent past. Soldiers are not spared
from these attacks as well---on or off
It is my fervent belief that there is
need to address this matter with some
urgency. Such officers risk their lives for
the greater good. They take the fight to
the streets. One life lost is one too many.
I am not talking about the bad eggs.
They should be dealt with accordingly.
But the vast majority of our officers are
good ones. They need our protection.
I am also not talking about salary in-
creases alone. This should be addressed
as they ought to be compensated for
risking their lives for us.
Some people usually say, "is dey who
choose dat wok, we didn't force dem."
Well, if no one chose this type of work
because it is dangerous, who then will
protect us? Will we import such officers?
Therefore, let us help them protect
themselves. In addition to appropriate
salaries, the associations should be ne-
gotiating for training opportunities for
their fellow men and women on the best
ways of working in dangerous situations
that I am certain will get even more
brazen as the times go by.
Officer, save thyself and others!
A wind surfer follows
a glass bottom boat
in Pigeon Point,
Links Archive May 3rd 2015 May 5th 2015 Navigation Previous Page Next Page