Historical past reveals the necessity for robust oversight

Dickson Igwe, socio-political columnist

The person or lady who desires to grasp the current Virgin Islands second, and look with readability into the longer term, should learn and assess objectively, current historical past.

On the very least, he and she or he ought to learn narratives of the Virgin Islands print press, over the previous 30 years.

However to start with a caveat is acceptable. This Previous Boy doubts residents need a UK takeover within the method of Turks and Caicos. What residents hope for is the inserting of mechanisms that examine impunity and make sure the prosecution of officers who cross the road between reliable governance and felony misconduct. 

Then there’s a nationwide warning. The Rule of Legislation can’t be optionally available. Residents should undertake honesty, integrity, and morality, as core to a totally useful society. It takes all residents to plough the ethical floor that results in a safe and protected nation.

That historical past lesson will reveal that 25 years of visionless politics, and poor governance and mismanagement, has left the Virgin Islands in a stagnant time bubble. The nation stays the place it was 20 years in the past.

Sure, there was an unlimited improve in private wealth, as any look on the hills with scores of recent mansions, and development of huge buildings in Street City, will reveal. However this displays deep wealth inequalities, not a wave of social prosperity.

The social and bodily infrastructure stays poor for a rustic that has seen tens of billions of {dollars} cross via its borders

The nation goes nowhere, and quick. If something, the nation has gone backwards. The early nationalists- males of true honor and integrity who helped usher in self autonomy- should be rolling of their graves right now, as they see from eternity, what their progeny have sowed and reaped.

The longer term for the younger relies upon upon a monetary companies and tourism financial system, owned by expatriates. Jobs in authorities, statutory boards, and the general public service, are not assured to younger natives, as in years previous, owing to a non-diversified mono financial system, making safe employment more and more unsustainable.

Leaders right now are solely now realizing the necessity for a meals enough, diversified, financial tradition, with native manufacturing on the core, and producing grocery store prepared, dwelling grown produce and livestock, creating a whole bunch of sustainable jobs.

Costly scholarships for natives principally go to children who migrate to the USA and Canada, utilizing Virgin Islands’ taxpayers’ money, for the advantage of employers and companies within the USA and elsewhere. 

The nationwide infrastructure, each bodily and social, stays unsuited for a ‘’ wealthy nation’’, and is extra acceptable for a far poorer nation.

Historical past explains how the nation received to this place.

The Virgin Islands received right here owing to 20 years of mismanagement and poor governance, an absence of correct oversight of the chief department, and a visionless politics that has no long run plan for taking the nation to the proverbial promised land: El Dorado.

All isn’t misplaced. The nation will get again to the place it ought to be, however solely with the efficient interventions and corrections of a strong governance watchdog, that as quickly because the Rubicon has been crossed from reliable governance into felony misconduct, reveals the pink card, and stalls illegitimate exercise, earlier than it turns into a monetary albatross. 

Moreover, a mechanism should be in place the place a governance watchdog can circumscribe a authorities that recklessly and irresponsibly walks away from a nationally accepted nationwide improvement plan, particularly the place assets for initiatives in a improvement plan are willfully misappropriated for another scheme or different spending binge, that has no bearing on what the nationwide improvement plan or said nationwide imaginative and prescient initiatives and dictates.

Historical past reveals that international locations that condone govt impunity, with no plan nor imaginative and prescient, and populations which can be apathetic to a governance kind that has no respect for the Rule of legislation, find yourself on the scrapheap of historical past, reaping poverty and nationwide distress.

Easy statement of postcolonial Africa is a wonderful instance of how malevolent and harmful is govt impunity.

Postcolonial Africa is a horror story of poor governance. In Africa, a failure to examine and circumscribe the chief department has led to tyranny, dictatorship, the looting of treasuries by strongmen, poverty, battle, illness and demise.

The Virgin Islands is probably not following that precise script, however there are similarities, equivalent to makes an attempt to centralize energy in a single workplace; nepotism and cronyism; entitlement and discrimination; victimization of those that fail to simply accept illegitimate directives; lack of monetary accountability; and a tradition of silence and worry.  

The Virgin Islands’ Fee of Inquiry is the final likelihood earlier than the Virgin Islands suffers the disastrous destiny of turning into a real banana republic, and a long time of social distress.   

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