Friday, March 9, 2012
Rumors, Competence and Traffic Management...
Using social and traditional media in a bid to distance himself from the growing fiasco, the Minister of Transport was apparently trying to dispel the notion even as the airwaves were abuzz with rumors that his subordinates were allegedly issuing tickets in town, and dismissed as “political mischief” reports that motorists were being pulled aside if their vehicles did not have the required inspection stickers and issued with $5,000 fixed penalty tickets. Assistant Superintendent Joanne Archie said the inspection of vehicles was not carried out by the T&T Police Service - “This has to do with Licensing Department. We do not inspect vehicles,” she added, further contributing to the belief that in matters of this nature, no one is really sure which part of the dog does the wagging and If one side agreed with the other they'd both be wrong. The people still have no idea who or what was behind this, no one in authority seems able to provide that information either, and no one in media seems to know who to ask.
The Transport Minister insisted that there was no way to enforce the inspection requirement at this time because the sticker machine was in disrepair and other aspects of the system had been neglected over the past decade. According to an advisory from his Ministry, while it is the law vehicles must be inspected by the Licensing Division in accordance with the Motor Vehicle and Road Traffic Act 48.50 Part V, S 27, there is no such drive against motorists at present. If this was the case, how difficult would it have been to station information officers at the nation's licensing offices on Thursday morning to allay the public's fears?
As is always the case here in La La Land, errors were made, others will be blamed as usual. The hours of productivity lost to hundreds if not thousands for no apparent reason is dismissed as just another aberration; the long lines, hours of waiting and pandemonium at the Licensing Office to comply with this latest demonstration of power over the people to whom they owe their livelihood is not the most sensible play in these highly uncertain political times and, if as Devant says this was NOT the work nor a responsibility of this government, then the failure to get out in front of it and calm the storm certainly was. Not everything can be handled with an 'Oops, my bad' shrug of the shoulders as someone should be held responsible and made an example of so as to prevent idle mischief from shutting the country down in the future. It is quite easy to prove in these technologically advance times who was responsible for this rumor being started in the first place and those in authority need to demonstrate that they do in fact know what it is they're doing.. This is not the way to run a country and it is certainly not sober governance by any stretch. All I can tell them is keep this up, the people will shock you all properly when elections come; trust me, you will be in awe.
Posted by Phillip Edward Alexander at 4:20 AM