Proof is essential for credibility
I listened with interest to the “official” responses to “five” oil spills in the south-western peninsula and none seemed to involve any semblance of culpability of the major players in oil production, only speculation that with the unprecedented number, it could only be “sabotage”—around which the entire effort to determine the cause is now centred.
Now, such an explanation is not improbable, but to the objective observer such speculation can hardly be satisfactory, since there is no forensic evidence to point in that direction nor is there any to eliminate the main players in production in terms of culpability.
What is needed is an independent oversight body similar to the US senate oversight committee that can conduct hearings like the latter and place the findings out there for public viewing and let the chips fall where they may.
The flour, rice and oil discount issue is another such requiring oversight. An official claims it has been a huge success but some precursory statements from the business side indicated it would be a logistical nightmare to implement such a gesture at such short notice.
Again, an independent oversight committee could have done the research to determine the extent of its success and point out to the initiators the extent of the feasibility of such a project.
We as a people cannot continue to accept “official” explanations without the necessary oversight, especially with issues that are in the public interest, as the two above and others of recent vintage like the EMBA issue and those involving sudden deaths at the nation’s hospitals, inter alia.
This of course is easier said than done, for there is a pervasive “you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours” culture in many areas of our national life where accountability is concerned, which has created a serious credibility issue when such explanations as above, are offered.
But no society can move forward unless there is a clear, unequivocal sense that the “explanation” given is forensic in character and not intended to appease the gullible and simple minded, which only a “non-aligned” organisation can give.
Dr Errol Benjamin