State of Emergency and war on crime.

The state of emergency will end at midnight tonight, Thursday, July 22, 2010, as the government was not supported in its bid to get an extension as its efforts were thwarted by the opposition party.

The question therefore becomes, what’s the plan B, is there a plan that exist outside of the State of Emergency which would have had to end at some time.

In one on the National papers today, well know criminal attorney Mr. Bert Samuels, noted his concern that the police where using the State of Emergency to capture people’s photographs as fingerprints to create a National Data base, which he believed was an infringement of people rights.

Mr. Samuels is a very good attorney and he is absolutely right, however I wish the commissioner had taken it a step further and collected DNA sample from every single person who was taken into custody.
So in addition to the photo and fingerprint database we would also have a DNA database from which biological samples can be compared with criminal suspect to bolster the crime fighting effort.

The two political parties in Jamaica are far more interested in winning general elections Vs protecting the lives and rights of innocent Jamaicans,
In a country that is not at war over 1600 persons are murdered each year and yet we see no need for an ” emergency” why?

I hear some lumpen say the police have enough policies and procedures outside of the SOE to get the job done, so can anyone of these bright sparks tell me, why our murder rate is as high as it is today and continues to get higher each year.

I knew the parties and power players would move to “kill” the State of Emergency, and the reason is simple. How can you allow the security forces unimpeded access to just about anywhere in Jamaica, that’s cannot be allowed to happen, well at least not for long.

Allowing the SOE to continue for much longer would have allowed the security forces to get close to the real source of criminal activity in Jamaica. It would allow the security forces to get unto those persons who are the financiers from criminal activity including murders and extortion in Jamaica.

If anyone believes that the seat of criminal behaviour exist downtown, well they had better become used to the fact that they are way off base.

The USA state department has not been fooled by the Jacket and Tie attire of many who lead and fully support these criminal enterprise and as such as put together one of the most elaborate piece of investigation complete with telephone transcript, container GPS tracking, counter surveillance, reminiscent of the cold ware era.

Now that the work has been complete a 265 page document has been unsealed and will list names that will make many  ” jaws” drop in Jamaica.
This information has been compiled over a 3-5 year period and has very damming evidence of many “high profile” Jamaicans who have amassed significant wealth both in Jamaica, the USA and the wider Caribbean and who are really the power behind criminal activity in Jamaica.

What’s sad is the local cops have been privy to a lot of this information, but are powerless to act as the source of real power in Jamaica has told them to “back off”.

The USA is taking the fight to drug dealers and interestingly many “brand name” Jamaicans have been caught up in their dragnet.

I really wonder what will happen when the file ends up on the desk of the Justice Minister and Attorney General.


Manatt gets more money from JLP !!

In their latest filing dated  June 30, 2010 law firm Manatt, Phillps and Phelps is reported to have been paid an additional US$15,000 for services rendered.

The document notedt a meeting was held with the Director of International Affairs on Dec 16, 2009 on ” extradition process requirements” .

The  additional sum on was paid over on  March 19, 2010, this was two days after Peter made his initial disclosure in the house.

See filing document below.

The proposed whistle blowing act, deception or not ?

The distraction cause by the Dudus affair has caused many people to miss out on many legislation and acts proposed by the government being rushed through parliament without the public participation.
Now we have the government creating the much-vaulted “whistle blowing act” which on the surface is a good piece of legislation when used  in other countries, but is  being made out to be a mockery in Jamaica.

How else can one explain a provision of the legislation which calls out for corrupt acts within an organization to be first reported to the person boss a.k.a. management. How stupid can these legislator be or maybe its not stupidity, it may be placed their to save their own asses, when its time for the whistle to be blown.

Lets consider this case; A worker in a government entity has found out the Minster with responsibility for the ministry is involved in “shady” activities and wants to put an end to his activities.
The law as its being proposed today, says that this person must first report this act to his/her boss first and then waits on actions to be taken.

In the Jamaican context there is no way this could work, as we I do not see any worker running this risk of losing his. /her job or life by reporting the bigger boss to the “lesser” boss.
The perception of corruption in Jamaica is far to high for any such proposal to be effective and so we would have created legislation that is not worth the piece of paper its written on.

This attitude by our elected officials is not at all surprising, as they always try to give the impression that they have created the necessary laws that on the surface appears sound, but is riddled with holes. Which are the very ones that allow them and their cohorts to escape if things do go south.

How many Jamaicans are even following this, and so another piece of useless legislation gets sneaked in through the back door while everyone is focused on Dudus who is locked down 23hrs per day in a cell somewhere in New York.

This worthless piece of the act therefore needs to be removed forthwith as it really exposes rather than protect the worker.
When you have people with something to hide and seeking to make provisions in the law to allow it, you know you really have corrupted minds entrenched in the parliament.

Why is the Attorney General not seeking to protect the people of this country by having this dumb section of the legislation removed, Opps I forget we only seek to protect the constitutional right of the minority not the majority.

Dudusgate forcing the need for Constitutional Changes

The “dudusgate” affair though very negative for the country has raised to the surface some fundamental changes that are required for the Jamaican State.
The Prime Minister – Minister of Defense, The National Security Minister, The Justice minister/ Attorney General combined to hijack National Security in this country and almost had Jamaica named a rouge state.

Never again should we allow this situation to happen in this and any other future government in this country. Bruce Golding during his time has advocated the issue of separation of power, but guess what no politician is really serious about this, if it means a diminished role in governance.

I am advocating that there be a split in some roles that clearly contradicted each other as  the dudus extradition affair has showed up a serious flaw in our system.

First, I am advocating for the role of Justice Minister and Attorney General is split, as what currently exist is untenable.
The Attorney General is the legal advisor to the government of Jamaica, while the justice minister is responsible for matters such as signing on extradition request for fugitives (being specific to this case).

What we ended up with is the Attorney General advising the ” Justice Minister” and the Prime Minister that that the extradition request made by the USA State Department  was flawed and as such should not be honored.
After much pressure from the public including the Manatt, Phillips and Phelps scandal the Attorney General then advised the Justice Minister and the PM that the Justice Minister should sign the request, which was done.

Now if we had this debacle for just an area don, can you imagine what would occur if the Justice Minister received a request for a member of the cabinet to be extradited. She would be forced to release this information to her cabinet colleagues long before the Jamaican public would have been aware of such a request.

Now once the Justice Minster receives this request she would advise the minister of National Security who would seek advice from the ” Attorney General” after which the DPP would be advised and a arrest warrant issued for apprehension of the suspect. All the above would be required to be done in absolute secrecy such that the person is question is not even aware of his impending arrest.

The dudus affair, along with statement form Lewin shows that any request for a cabinet minister or persons of significant interest to the government would be compromised by the fact that the people to whom the request is made have their umbilical cord tied to ruling party.

This must be changed, as it is clear that we cannot trust those with party interest to do the correct thing.
A man like Greg Christie has done a lot of work without favour to anyone or any party and is completely independent of political pressure.

The Minister of National Security have got to be one such persons as this effectively removes all link (at least in my mind) between politicians and the security forces, thus allowing them to do their job.
Without this change we will only be paying lip service to the idea of removing political interference from police force.

Mr Lloyd Barnett please advise as I am not a legal expert, on what would be required to bring about this change.
The Jamaican people would now ensure that this change be enacted as soon as possible and before the next General Election.

We the people must force changes as politicians if given the opportunity will NOT go for changes that is likely to affect them.

Eg how can our constitution allow a accused criminal to remain a member of parliament, the people’s representative and vote on “crime bills”, this is absolutely absurd.

But guess what, its happening right now, how could it?

Is Dwight Nelson really credible?

So if we are to believe former commissioner of police Hardley Lewin, it means someone high up in the ranks of the JLP feed Christopher “Dudus” Coke information on his pending extradition request only minutes after both the Minister of National Security and the Prime Minister were made aware.

According to Lewin the minister turn “white” (pale) when he was informed of the pending request and would not leave when he (Lewin) got up to leave to inform the Prime Minister.
Was the National Security Minister simply fearful why he turned “white” when informed or was he simply angry that the USA had the temerity to try and bring in the JLP strongman.

Its interesting to note that after this bombshell which was dropped by Lewin, it  was met by a immediate reaction by the Minister of National Security which launched a vicious attack on Lewin, indicating that his tenure as Commissioner of police was a failure.
Did Nelson forget that he was Minister of National Security at the time, and so equally shared responsibility for the failure to control crime?

It is interesting to note that Lewin decided to do the honourable thing and resign having recognized that the political directorate was only playing lip service to crime.
Why did Dwight Nelson not resign also, as he too was not making any impact on the crime situation, which spiraled out of control during his tenure? But that’s the problem with Jamaican politicians, they have no performance standards by which they are, measured and as such if they fail, the only way to kick them out is at election time. This is an untenable situation, which cannot be allowed to happen, and as a  country must ensure we fight for change.

Consider the CEO of a company who fails to delivery the “goods” as part of his tenure and performance standards. Do you believe the board of director would allow him to remain at the helm while the company continues to bleed red at the bottom line?

What is also interesting is that Mr. Nelson outburst comes at a time when we are debating the none other than the ” WHISTLE BLOWING” legislation, how convenient, was that a stroke of genius or simply coincidence.
Mr. Nelson wants does not want to allow Mr. Lewin to blow the whistle instead he (Nelson) wants to muzzle Lewin using the  “SECRETS ACT”, now tell me are these guys really serious.

Worst of all they are setting up the “WHISTLE BLOWING” act in such a manner that the information gets reported to the Minister of National Security and the Prime Minister – how ironic. Here we are creating a legislation to forward information with two persons with portfolio responsible for the nations security (Minister of Defense and Minister on National Security) who have proved beyond the shadow of a doubt to lack credibility.

Mr. Nelson vile attack brings back vivid reminder of Bruce Golding statements in parliament when Peter Phillips mentioned the name Manatt, Phillips and Phelps. Golding later sheepishly had to admit to the entire nations weeks later than he not only knew but also sanctioned the deal.

We wait to hear what Senator Dwight Nelson has to say

I have two questions for our constitutional lawyer Dr Lloyd Barnett –
1. What would it take to make the Minister of National Security a none party position.
2. If the USA for example decide to file an extradition warrant for the Prime Minister or a cabinet member, wouldn’t the minister of National Security find himself in a very compromising position?

What did Dwight Nelson say in 2006?

The JLP, in a statement yesterday, said that the Official Secrets Act was conceived in a colonial era when the business of government was considered to be the business of the governors and not the ordinary people who were expected to take whatever they got and ask no questions.

“It has no place in a modern, democratic society committed to openness, transparency and accountability,” said the party’s information spokesman Dwight Nelson.—JLP

Will LNG solve our energy problems? A second look

Has anyone seriously taken a look at what is required if the GOJ decides to take us quickly down this LNG path.

Mr. Robertson is moving with great haste and while he is correct that we need an alternative to expensive foreign oil, has he taken a serious look at what’s required.

In part one I explored the mechanism such as pricing etc and the agreement between the government and the private investors involved in putting together the LNG plant, but what about the local cost of the conversion.

Electricity cost is one of the biggest factors affecting the cost of manufacturing in Jamaica today and the JPS agreement of 2001 as well as volatile oil prices and devaluation has played a critical role in this situation.

Today, JPS burns what is called bunker C fuel or No 6 fuel in its boilers which is used to generate steam for a couple of its steam driven generators.

It also uses Number 3 fuel which is a lighter than bucker C and a little heavier than traditional diesel in its Diesel generators to generate the bulk of the electricity used in Jamaica today.

The cost of the infrastructure for the above is enormous and not as easily replaced as one would think.

Electrical Generation

Now if we are to see any significant saving in the cost of electricity it means JPS would have to replace its existing equipment, boilers, generators, storage system, fuel delivery system at enormous cost.

So the billion-dollar question becomes, “ is the Jamaica Public Service willing to cough up the billions required to replace its existing system to be able to use LNG for the generation of electricity.

Any company who would be willing to do that would need some sort of exclusive agreement from the GOJ in terms of fuel pricing and access to the electricity market as well as guarantees in terms of profits and future rate adjustments.

So what about the private power providers, how will they be accommodated, as they too would need to replace their existing equipment, will they be offered similar guarantees.

Private Household

Probably over 90% of the Jamaican householder today consumes cooking gas, which in most cases is a combination of butane and propane (or just propane) for cooking purpose. If the government embarks on its quest to take us to LNG, then some our existing gas burners, as we know them today will not work without slight modifications.

They are two different fuels, and for LNG to work properly the orifices on the burner would have to be adjusted to use LNG vs. propane which it would have normally used.

This is really not a big problem anyway as most of the stoves we used today are made in the USA and in most case were made for LNG. In fact we normally get a technician to make those adjustments once the stove get here as our fuel does not burn properly without this adjustments (you typically get a yellow instead of a blue flame).

So Mr. Robertson you simply cannot just tell us how much millions or billions we are going to save you must also tell us.

  1. How much it’s going to cost for the above changes to be made before we can expect to start seeing any savings.
  2. How long will it take us to start seeing these savings (# of years)?

The 2013 date for the start up of the plant in my mind is a pie in the sky, as there is no way on earth these guys are going to spend US$ 600 M unless they have a solid market for their fuel.

The GOJ of Jamaica would therefore have to have sealed up agreements with the Bauxite companies, JPS as well as the Caribbean Cement Company who are the largest energy users in Jamaica.

Have there been  any such agreements ?

“Hardley” can be take seriously?

Former police commissioner Hardley Lewin has made some very damning pronouncements, one in which he accuses the Minister of National Security and by extension the GOJ of advising Christopher “Dudus” Coke of a impending USA extradition request a mere 15 minutes after he (Lewin) advised the minister.

Now if Mr. Lewin had made these statement months ago, then we could have taken him very seriously but today when he wears a orange shirt can he really be taken seriously?
Why has it taken the former police commissioner almost ten months to say the work of the JCF was being compromised by a corrupt set of politicians?

When Mr. Lewin was leaving office, he suggested that nothing was amiss between himself and the government and refused to give a reason for his decision to leave.
If Mr. Lewin was being honest, he would have come to the Jamaican public on the very day he found out that matters of National Security was being compromised by the ” Commander in Chief and the National Security Minister, why did he remain silent?

Mr. Lewin is a coward and his stance today is nothing short of being hypocritical as here is a man who may have known about corruption at the highest level yet REFUSED to say anything until he joined the band of corrupt politicians.

How could this man have led the army and then become  the head of the police force, when both require persons who are fearless and are willing to do what is in the best interest of the country.
I am so happy he no leads any of these groups, as his cowardice would not have allowed him to send the security forces into Tivoli to crush the insurgency that exist there

Even if Hardley Lewin was telling the truth, the fact that he has now being aligned to a political party, makes his claim dubious and as such he does not appear to be credible.

Now lets suppose he is really telling the truth and what happened really took place, he needs to be charged along with the Minister of National Security for perverting the course of justice, resulting in the death of 76 Jamaicans

I go back to a article I wrote a few weeks ago, the role of Minister of National Security must be made a NONE PARTY position, as these guys CANNOT be trusted see

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