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CAUSE OF DEATH BY MAJORITY VOTE! by Rae Samuel

posted 18 Feb 2013, 12:11 by Gerry Kangalee
Legendary social critic and comic, the late Lenny Bruce, referred to by Richard Pryor as the best of their genre, once pointed out that you cannot keep a good crook down. Lenny came to mind when I was reading about one of our own. It turns out this commissioner on the enquiry of the 1990 coup pulled off what appears to be a scam of a lifetime. 

This military attaché, this distinguished serving officer, turns out to be less than authentic. With references from dead Presidents, with a collection of some 40 resumés by his own admission, this gentleman manages to "bramble" his way onto the panel investigating the events.

 Now I am not saying the gentleman is a crook. As our late valiant comrade Joe Young used to say: "ah too old to go to jail”, but this guy is really too good to keep down. In passing, one must ask what it is causes our military to get things wrong, before and after the fact. In 1970, a Nigerian officer, Colonel Danjuma was called home to serve in a military government. At the time he was on a panel trying Raffique Shah and others for mutiny. Now 43 years later a commissioner on a similar panel is exposed as having bogus references. 

Par for the course you say? Maybe…because I am reading and hearing of the ‘re-birth' of the Flying Squad. For the modern generation, the "Flying Squad" was an elite unit, headed by then Commissioner of Police Randolph Burroughs. The local media turned "Randy" into a cult figure and ace crime fighter who with his heroic band would rid this country of crime. Randy and his squad simply shot first and questioned after. You might say he and his team were the crime plan of the era. Randy went down on flames, charged with murder, drug trafficking and other serious crimes.

Now we read that one of his former lieutenants alleges that a new version of the squad was indeed operative, with the blessing of the Minister of National Security. Once again there are so many levels here. Assuming that the Minister did indeed give his blessing, is the officer asking him to admit to misbehaviour in public office? 

Reminds me of a story an old police officer told me once. A man walks into Besson Street Police Station to make a report. It seems that "A" was asked by "B" to sleep with him in return for payment. "A" complied but "B" reneged. An angry and upset "A" went to the station, blissfully unaware he was confessing to sodomy and prostitution.

That apart, where has this officer been residing, and reading over the last 5 to 6 years? Has he not read or heard of promises made to our national 2006 World Cup football team in Germany and by whom? 
 
But then maybe living here has clouded and confused him and so many others in this strange land where cause of death is decided by majority vote. The first pathologist makes a finding, the second one makes an alternative conclusion and then a third is called in as a tie breaker. What happens if there are only two on duty? Guess you are not officially dead. You will have to wait until a tie breaker is found or one of the coroners is declared 'unqualified'. But that particular judge went on to occupy high political office…for a while. Now where did that word come up recently concerning public officials making enquiries?

But I always tell comrades this is a most opportune time to press for social change. You do not have to convince anyone that the social order has broken down. I think far too many "leaders" are shying away from the task of creating a new social order which is infinitely more challenging and complex than condemning the old one. Even one in which an 80 year old man roughs up his wife and pelts stones behind her relatives. Way to go geriatric Rambo!
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