Commissioner of Police Dwayne Gibbs has made himself very visible and very vocal these days, as if trying to distance himself from all the bacchanal and 'lackaray' coming out of the Government as they stumble and collide into each other like, well like drunks at a party that has gone on too long.
While his presence in the Diego Martin operation seemed to have caught most off guard and appeared a little comical, by the time they got to Laventille he was starting to look the part of the Commissioner of Police. The men seem energized and focused, and the feeling was almost one of able bodies capable of doing the job.
His only problem now seems to be the politicians above him who appear to be doing everything in their power to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory regardless of how accidental that victory occurred or how little they had to do with it in the first place.
Quick to distance himself from the gaffes and comedy routine, the professional sounding Gibbs may not be a 'Trini,' but he seems to have learnt to 'take in front before in front take him.'
Current Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissesar would do well to learn from him. and is badly in need of a personal advisor to help her distinguish fact from fiction.
You would think with all the many well versed, well paid and well heeled windbag advisors around her, someone would have looked up from the communal back scratch long enough to notice that not only have they lost the support of the crowd, they've actually left them behind.
Relying instead on their PR machine and talking heads to 'spin' everything, why don't they just listen to the people?
It seems so much simpler if you ask me.
When people say the honeymoon is over, what they are really saying is the 'fed-up-ness' that booted Patrick Manning from Office is now being aimed squarely at Kamla and crew, and no amount of dodging, name calling and propaganda is distracting the people.
The Government, for all its self praise and accolades, continues to fail at it's much touted and promised solution to the scourge of violent crime and the people are fed up in the day and scared for their lives at night.
My (unpaid yet surprisingly very effective) advice on the issue of the Management of Crime & Punishment, Law & Order (again, still unpaid) is worth a try, and I am available for meetings on short notice:
There are three Ministries that are critical to the success or failure of any war on crime; Social Services, Education and National Security.
At present all three of these Ministries have the wrong skill set at their helms and the wrong person appointed as Minister.
Party hack Tim Gopeesingh could be put back into the Ministry of Health (or anywhere else for that matter) and a long serving and successful school Principal be brought in and appointed as Minister of Education.
The successful candidate ideally would have been a Principal of a fairly large and successful school (read here does well at exam time, enforces proper discipline) and must be able to work well as part of a team.
Job one would/should be the convening of a 'Board' of the Ministry of Education, made up of other serving and/or retired 'successful' Principals, representatives of the national PTA and at least one social activist to bring the 'street' to the conversation.
Job two would be the drafting and implementing of policy based on identifying the failing schools within the system and making their elevation to an established 'minimum performance level' mandatory.
This MPL would be based on scholastic achievement, attendance, teacher participation and discipline among other criteria.
Glen Ramadhar Singh is indispensable to the Party from the blind loyalty perspective, and could and should be better utilized in developing the Party at constituency level and broadening its appeal with its target audience (read expanding core support).
He is hopeless in his current position and I realize now that his constant grandstanding is nothing short of a cry for help from someone tragically miscast trying to at least look the part.
Verna St. Rose Greaves, Verna St. Rose Greaves, Verna St. Rose Greaves.
She needs to be made the Minister of Social Development (discard that foolish Ministry of the People silliness, it has failed) and she also needs to set up a 'Board' for her Ministry.
Her board needs to be peopled with long serving NGO's, the Hazel Browns, Rhonda Maingots and others who, if willing to serve, will pollinate the Ministry with hope and people policies designed to rein in the problems on a humanist and community level and put policies in place to redirect currently misspent energies.
Give them the tools, the funding and the support and get out of their way.
This Ministry urgently needs to be broken up into its relative parts (Police, Army, Coast Guard, Intelligence etc) with the heads of each section being a 'seat' on a governing Board answering to a trained technocrat. In this instance I would have no problem hiring a foreigner from the CIA, MOSSAD or even the KGB (or whatever they call themselves now) to Chair the Board and to draft and implement policies and I strongly recommend this route. I would also recommend a 'Gibbs' for the Police Service to work WITH the Philberts of this world, not replace them; another successful foreign 'advisor' for the Army, Coast Guard etc, to work alongside the heads not replace them, to bring fresh ideas, new perspectives and morale to an otherwise stale and neutered offensive that HAS to be tired of the political bungling that has been going on above them for years.
These three Ministries, properly set up, will have an immediate impact on the reduction of crime and the redevelopment of failing communities with almost nary a need for new legislation.
Successful Mangers know that hiring the right people for the job is more than half the battle, knowing how to get out of your own way is quite possibly the other half.
Hire them, appoint them, give them the tools and the funding they need to do the job and get out of their way.
Kamla, for the umpteenth time, treat this like a job; hire and appoint people who are capable of enunciating policy based on the reality of each specific situation; who are able to draft policy from which plans and legislation can seamlessly flow; and who can get the job done with no need of showboating or self glorifying antics.
We are tired of voting Governments into Office, only to have to give them rope and wait for them to hang themselves.
(And in answer to the obvious question, yes I AM available for the post of 'Highly Paid Advisor to the Cabinet.')