Re-virginated politician David Simmons: “Do as I say, not as I do”
Oh, this hypocrisy is almost too much to take!
As the newly appointed head of the Turks and Caicos Integrity Commission, SIR David Anthony Cathcart Simmons recently declared that members of the advisory council and consultative forum must now declare their income, assets and liabilities along with all other senior public servants. (Turks and Caicos Weekly News: Integrity commission extends its reach)
In truth, that’s a great idea that, in conjunction with other measures, assists in making sure that the political elites have the best interests of society in mind and not their own profits when they make decisions.
Yup. SIR David thinks it’s a great idea for the Turks and Caicos, but not for himself of any other Barbados politician or public servant.
“In the last 35 years David Simmons had many opportunities to propose and implement all kinds of rules and oversight into how people in positions of power access and spend public money. He never did.”
Simmons fought against integrity and transparency laws for 35 years…
In 35 years of being paid with public money, and having control of public money – SIR David Simmons never once had to declare his assets, liabilities or net worth.
As a former Barbados career politician, Attorney General, acting Prime Minister and then Chief Justice, SIR David Simmons had many opportunities to propose and implement all kinds of rules and oversight into how people in positions of power access and spend public money. He never did.
But now that SIR David and his family have made their fortune, he can start to implement ethics, integrity and transparency on other countries. Just not on himself or his friends in Barbados, you see.
Unethical for career politician David Simmons to become Chief Justice
SIR David Simmons is the archetypical ethically-challenged politician.
The truth is that David Simmons planned and accepted his appointment to Chief Justice of Barbados knowing that it would undermine public confidence in the independence of our courts. It was a career strategy. A planned event. Do you really think that he “resigned” from politics not knowing that in a short time he would be appointed Chief Justice?
“When career politician David Anthony Cathcart Simmons agreed to accept the position of Chief Justice from his old political friend Owen Arthur, his act brought the administration of justice in Barbados into disrepute.”
It was the very presence of a career politician, former Attorney General and former Acting Prime Minister as Chief Justice that warned ordinary people that they hadn’t a hope of seeing justice in Barbados. But that was the intent, you see. Simmons’ action allowed the Barbados Labour Party to consolidate power throughout the executive, legislative and judicial branches. That was the intent and the plan. (See David Simmons’ bio here. Very impressive career politician!)
SIR David knew his actions were wrong.
In a recent article devoted almost exclusively to David Simmons the politician, SIR David confessed to The Nation…
“I have not voted in elections in Barbados since 1999. While I was Chief Justice, I refused to vote because I considered that the exercise of a vote is the demonstration of a preference for a particular party or candidate and as Chief Justice I was expected to be impartial and to have no preferences, so I refused to vote.”
… SIR David Simmons in The Nation article Sir David’s Political Run
So Simmons admits that he recognised the conflict of interest between his life as a career politician and his appointment virtually overnight to the powerful position of Chief Justice. His being concerned about “voting” is nothing compared to his unethical action in accepting the office of Chief Justice.
Our current Prime Minister, David Thompson, acknowledged how unethical it was when former Attorney General Simmons was appointed as Chief Justice. See BFP’s article Barbados Prime Minister slams retiring Chief Justice David Simmons over the ethics of Simmons’ appointment.
David Simmons was actively involved in politics since 1957, first ran for election in 1971 was first elected in 1976. He was and is a career politician first for 25 years, and a judge second for only 7 years. That’s why Prime Minister David Thompson dumped Simmons as Chief Justice.
Without a doubt SIR David’s call for asset declarations by Turks & Caicos government elites should be met by cries of “Show me yours first, SIR David – for the last 33 years!”
What should SIR David Simmons call his new biography?
According to The Nation, SIR David is writing his biography and intends to call it “What Luck!”
We at BFP can think of a multitude of more appropriate titles. So let’s hear what our readers have to say…
What should Sir David Simmons call his new biography?