Our Readers' Opinions
August 17, 2012
NEMO’s publicity – who benefits?

Fri, Aug 17, 2012

Editor: For sure Otto Sam, the messenger, the name of the “most wanted citizen” who ventured to publish two per cent of NEMO’s indifference is swiftly sought to be punished.{{more}}

A letter from the Deputy Director’s attorney on July 12, threatening legal action on behalf of her client, followed by a memo from the Director seeking evaluation and action to be taken against Otto. And before you can say “Jack”, the deliberate distraction from the real issues came; Service Commissions on August 7, 2012, suspended me from “duties” on half pay.

For them, the “bandit” had been caught! The “fugitive” has been cornered! A mock trial and then execution! Dismissal! Yet, I refuse to believe that my piece on NEMO (touching the tip of the iceberg) has rushed Cecil Blazer Williams’ Commissions into constructing “disciplinary measures” against me. Blazer, Chairman of the Service Commissions, is one of the columnists of The News newspaper who expresses his views on all issues, including matters pertaining to the public and or civil service. I, therefore, even if I am being punished and disadvantaged, do not think that Mr Williams’ Commissions can discipline me for expressing fact and truth as a citizen.

But who really benefits from the piece published on NEMO? For sure, NEMO and the nation of St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) are the greatest beneficiaries of my critique. Will NEMO function another 11 months without a general staff meeting? No! Will NEMO revisit its approach to its “on the road activity” before the hurricane season? Of course! Would it evaluate soonest after events and make changes accordingly? Highly possible! Will NEMO have disaster plans for the safety of its workers and their resources? Certainly! They cannot continue much longer without such! Can NEMO continue to be managed by mischief and mood? I don’t think so. Will NEMO move to improve on fashioning policies to give out items to politicians? Yes, why? It can create witch hunts for all involved in the future. Have the bigwigs in the Ministry of National Security, Chief Personnel Officer (CPO) and all parties concerned ensured that NEMO does not repeat the published issues? Yes! Will NEMO have a basic log of activities, planned by staff, posted in its office? Yes. And who benefits from an improved NEMO? All citizens, including the staff and management! In fact, the management will claim all the improvement, enhancing their profiles. When we put light on dark shades, we see the dirt, but once we clean them, polish them, we celebrate a total shiny place! That’s what will happen in this case.

Initially, workers may be fearful that if Otto wrote the truth and is suspended, with thoughts of firing him, what will they do to me if I even tell the truth to the CPO, or any officer who may conduct an investigation into the issues raised in the piece “evaluated.” They will be scared to death to let their voices be heard. However, even if Otto is prosecuted, suspended, fired, retired, they will reap the benefit of a more civil NEMO. A more mature NEMO! A NEMO that meets and respects all its workers’ views, even when they disagree. A NEMO where there is no fear of expressing your views positively, without having senior people shouting at and arguing with you in the General Office. At this point, even Otto will be demonized. But who is me? Am I good like or better than Jesus? Nelson Mandela? Martin Luther King? Or Cecil Blazer Williams and Yvonne Francis-Gibson who were persecuted 37 years ago in SVG? No, I am not! So, who is me if am persecuted? I have neither fear nor concerns about that, since the real beneficiary of my critique will be NEMO and the nation of SVG.

I will never compromise principle and conscience for survival or the “good life”, since all who do so are regarded as orphans, vagrants and beggars, who must wait on the state for their daily bread. Not me! God is the one who determines if man lives or dies. Therefore, though persecuted, half a loaf or no loaf, my voice will not be sold for crumbs, kisses and handshakes!

Do surveys and interviews at NEMO, test the truth. Give me a fair trial where I will give you the balance, which cannot be publicised. Reflect, mend the errors and NEMO and this nation will benefit tremendously from the piece for which you wish to slay me.

Otto Sam