The week that was
July 26, 2016

The famous “Convent Case” is over, and – surprise, surprise – the child won! The case, for those who’ve forgotten, involved an insubordinate and foul-mouthed young student, who mouthed off to a teacher in the type of language that is not taught at Catholic schools. Convent school officials were having none of it and expelled her. {{more}}The Ministry of Education then tried to cart her off to the Emmanuel High School Mesopotamia, before her lawyer Jomo Thomas intervened and secured her a place at Thomas Saunders Secondary. The lesson, as always, is that times are changing. Once upon a time, teachers were judge and jury, and headmistresses were the executioners. Their word was law and their deeds were infallible. This week, the Court balanced the scales a little bit, insisting that schools follow their own rules and that Ministries don’t treat children as transferrable chattel with no due process rights. Everyone accepts that the young loudmouth should have been disciplined, but schools – and governments – must follow the rules and procedures that they themselves put in place. Hopefully the young lady – now in Community College – won’t see this as an encouragement to further outbursts, but instead understand that her exuberance has led to a victory for justice and the rule of law.


A fully Furnished Bedroom at the Lady of Guadalupe Home for Girls – thanks to Digicel
Kudos to corporate citizen Digicel, for the $150,000 they spent to refurbish and upgrade the Lady Guadalupe Home for Girls.

The Home, which is a welcome respite for girls who are victims of abuse or have fled from difficult situations at home, now has new beds, retrofitted offices, improved kitchen appliances, air-

conditioning and a TV. After the hundreds of thousands spent promoting their brand on skimpy bikinis and disposable Carnival costumes, it’s good to see that Digicel can also put some of its massive profits toward something lasting and meaningful. Well done.


What diagnosis should we give to Dr Michael Goodluck? Megalomania? Narcissism? Or just plain ‘chupiddy’? The goodly doctor seems intent on offering vicious political commentary to his patients. Twice now, the public has been treated to Dr Goodluck’s secretly-recorded rants, where he berates his clinic patients for supporting the Unity Labour Party and Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves. His exhaustive chronicling of the Government’s failings usually end with his exasperation with the stupidity of the ULP supporters and his own frustration with their inability to see things his way. However, Dr Goodluck is probably correct: only an inept government would continue to hire and pay a doctor who goes to work at government clinics simply to berate patients for their political choices, and publicly attack elected political leaders before a captive audience of people who simply want a diagnosis or a prescription. Dr Goodluck is entitled to his political opinions, but his use of the government clinic as a soapbox to attack both parliamentarians and patients is simply wrong. This isn’t the bedside manner one expects of the good doctor.

It’s time for Dr Goodluck to shape up or find a new line of work before his ‘goodluck’ runs out. We hear Nice Radio is hiring.


We’re confused. When radio personality and NDP activist Colin ‘Hitman’ Graham was arrested after using his vehicle to obstruct traffic during an opposition demonstration, he painted himself as an innocent victim of the Government’s Stormtroopers. Graham, a talented self-promoter, practically had himself added to Martin Luther King and Mahatma Ghandi in the pantheon of great civil rights leaders. Imagine our surprise to learn that Graham slunk into court to plead guilty to three charges of obstruction, failure to obey the police, and driving with an expired licence. For his crimes, he paid a $600 fine. The guilty pleas make it a little difficult for Graham to stick to his original narrative, but truth seems to be a moving target. Maybe one day the Hitman will hit it.

If I had a question in SVG Parliament

…I’d ask the Government what happened to the “unparalleled” “unprecedented” road reconstruction programme that was promised during the election campaign. Other than the work on the interminable Leeward Highway, precious little is being done on the nation’s roads, and BRAGSA seems even more dormant than usual. Is the road repair ever going to begin? Or, instead of “unprecedented”, do we file this promise under “unfulfilled”?

Media Watch

Dr Richard Byron-Cox is a talented Vincentian and a formidable intellect, but biographer he is not. Dr Byron-Cox has been attempting, over the course of a three-part interview in The Searchlight, to chronicle the fascinating life and times of Ras Hailu Teferi, also known as Bandi Payne. Older Vincentians will remember Bandi as a gifted artist who migrated to Shashamane, Ethiopia, along with scores of other Caribbean Rastafarians, to occupy land gifted to them by former Emperor Haile Selassie. There’s a great story in there somewhere, but Dr Byron-Cox’s ego won’t allow him to tell it. We learn less about Bandi and more about Dr Cox –– his thoughts, and his love for flowery language. In less conceited hands, this would be a compelling series. Instead, it’s a chore.