Posted by: nastylittletruths | August 28, 2009

Loving Our Neighbour

Wow, that’s a hell of a subject matter when I myself have had enough issues with ‘neighbours’ in the various places I’ve lived before. My idea of a perfect home is where I get up the morning and while stretching out my laziness in either of the porches or having my morning cuppa, I see no houses. (My wife thinks I am stark raving mad in these days of bandits, killers and rapists to be living “in the bush”). But, it’s not that I hate people that much eh, it’s just taking the concept of “good fences make good neigbours” to another level :-)

Why write about all this? That story about the woman and her daughter living in a watery home in Debe highlighted by IETV and CNC3 on Wednesday night and also by the Guardian yesterday. (Unfortunately their website is down).

First, this is a testament to the evil that lurks in men’s hearts against their fellow brothers and sisters. Imagine wilfully blocking the drains and so ensuring a living nightmare for this family… What did these people do to deserve this? Are they bad people? Are they a stain on your ‘community’ and your intention is for them to leave and never to return? In our haste to judge – it happens when an emotional event overwhelms you – we await your side of the story…

** Update – Oh, we saw you on TV tonight residents of Seeraj Trace, and it wasn’t pretty. To say you are all a bunch of ignorants is too simple – we may have to go with ‘ignant’. Blocking ‘your road’ with cars so that the backhoe couldn’t go in and clear the drain – a job that took a total of 20 minutes after it was done? Bravo… You’ve earned a very special place in our minds and I hope that all the people who finally came to see the Samaroo’s plight (the power of the media!!!) throw the book at you.

Secondly, this is also a reflection of how our institutions have broken down in that no governmental body can effectively make this right. I don’t blame government so much as I blame the staff at those institutions who have no intention of doing their jobs. I’ve written about this before, but the service of the public service has gone the way of manufacturing – excuses, that is, of how they can’t do this and they can’t do that. This, my people, is a symptom of a failed state no matter how much the politicians can’t stand that description.

Last but not least, how does this reality match the fantasy of living in the wealthiest country in the Caribbean? Not only the Samaroo family, but how many others live in squalor and poverty while millions (in US$) is stolen every day by our politicians and their friends and families? Make no bones about it, we are being robbed every single day once decisions like spending US$348 million for US$100m worth of equipment is made and “justified”…

But the glimmer of hope is the outpouring of sympathy and assistance from the hundreds of citizens and some corporations who called in to both IETV and CNC3. Focusing on that allows me to go on rather than despair about my fellow countrymen… Let us not make it a story of the week and forget after the celebrations of the long weekend…

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