AS a taxpayer and a voter, I am growing weary of the latest attempts to usurp the democratic process in the calls for the Minister of National Security to resign. Calls that are political in its origin and nature, and which are now unfortunately being parroted by the editorial board of at least one local newspaper.
Even if one were to put aside the fact that the prime directive of the media is to report facts of public importance in an objective manner, and cautiously welcomed you to this new, expanded role, the media should never assume the position of protagonist or crusader against any individual, private organisation or government. To do so, is to create a template for future abuses by political and financial interests.
Similarly, it should never be in the domain of the media to proclaim itself the sole determiner or arbiter of justice in any issue of public import. Especially, where information and evidence is incomplete, and when contrary to the principles of due process, the accused is not given a considered opportunity to defend himself.
Now, specific to the issue at hand, can someone please tell me on what basis should Minister Young be fired or tender his resignation?
Without the benefit of due process. And solely based on a one-sided case made out to the public. A case, I should remind you, that has been steeped in conjecture and “lackaray”. And has been a litany of shifting goalposts and selective editing from the start.
Had the government’s intentions been illegal in nature, why then would they have not acted robustly to conceal the meeting of March 27? Instead, to the contrary, a press release was issued immediately on conclusion of that meeting.
If there was something to hide, why even host the meeting at the Diplomatic Centre when a parked jet on the tarmac at Piarco presents a much better opportunity to conceal?
Yet still today, almost two months later, in the midst of a generation-defining public health emergency, we are preoccupied with what amounts to little more than a fishing expedition by the Opposition.
Given the wailing and gnashing of yellow teeth, you would swear that Minister Young had touched a flight attendant inappropriately or slapped down his mistress in a public car park or is evading charges in a United States court or has been caught wilfully interfering with a witness.
If at any time, Minister Young has violated the public trust and his oath as an MP or minister, there are remedies available to us, the people of Trinidad and Tobago, that are far superior to the one being offered by the media at this juncture.
If Minister Young lied to Parliament, there is a disciplinary procedure and a committee of his peers that he must face.
If he broke a local law, then I encourage those with evidence to take it to the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service.
If he broke international law, call The Hague ASAP.
If he broke a treaty, let’s wait to see what action the aggrieved party takes (if any) before we begin the wilful blood-letting.
In the meantime, and for as long as he continues to have the confidence of the Prime Minister and his constituents, everyone else—the media included—ought to leave Minister Young alone and instead focus on the real issues that are at play at this time. Beginning with the porous rationale that informed the Opposition’s decision to abstain in the vote on the Bail Amendment Bill last Friday. A decision that is far more despicable and indefensible than any of the alleged crimes that Minister Young is being accused of at this time.