David Thompson and the Democratic Labour Party have been hiding behind their “Opposition” status for the past two years, and if the truth be known for much longer than two years. Whenever the subject of integrity legislation or conflict of interest standards comes up, the DLP and their apologists say “We’re not the government. What do you expect us to do about these issues?”
Leadership is what we expect, Mr. Thompson. Leadership.
THIS is what Thompson and the DLP could have DONE during the past two years…
– DLP makes a written statement of a commitment to anti-corruption legislation upon election, and an ongoing datelined strategy to study, consult and create the necessary legislation while in opposition so it will be ready to implement immediately upon winning the next election whenever that is.
– DLP also makes a written statement of a commitment to clean its own house and to establish party standards for elected representatives and candidates long in advance of the next election – so that candidates can be selected with the new standards in mind.
– Internal DLP committee struck to carry out this entire strategy.
– Standing committee examines anti-corruption legislation and standards from around the world. This will be ongoing as the draft legislation is formulated over the next year.
– Standing committee calls for a series of internal meetings where DLP members discuss integrity standards for DLP candidates and representatives – to be implemented by the end of 2006.
– Public meetings are announced to receive input from citizens. These meetings will be held every month in different parishes until all are covered. The meetings also serve to raise the issues of integrity and political corruption in the public consciousness.
– DLP releases preliminary outline of draft legislation with many caveats about still in development, etc.
– DLP Integrity Committee does the talk show circuit and media briefs.
– Letters and articles start appearing in Bajan media discussing integrity issues.
– Public discussion re amnesty in the context of integrity legislation.
– DLP publicly invites comments from the BLP about the proposed draft integrity legislation. (No comments? Ok… move on)
– DLP caucus meets to formally discuss draft integrity legislation and party integrity standards in light of six months or research, discussion and public input.
– Integrity standards for candidates and representatives are solidified for a vote later in the year.
– Revised draft of DLP Integrity Legislation is released for both public and party discussion.
– Party senior executive formally approves draft integrity legislation and candidate standards.
– DLP membership ratifies the finalized DLP Draft Integrity Legislation and candidate’s standards. The standards are now mandatory for candidates, and a complaint and review process has been established.
– One high profile DLP candidate refuses to sign on to the standards. Leader David Thompson thanks the member for his years of valuable service to Barbados and the DLP. To everyone’s shock, Thompson with the full approval of the senior executive cancels the candidacy of the member and declares a new nomination in that area.
– Integrity legislation is presented to the pubic.
– Party announces that all candidates and representatives must adhere to the ratified Standards and sign on to the draft integrity legislation.
– Campaign begins with the BLP on the ropes over their corruption and lack of integrity standards.
Do you have any other ideas about what the DLP could have done about corruption issues, integrity legislation and conflict of interest rules in the past two years? Comments are open!