Sound Political Debates: A Critical Element to Good Governance
It seems to me that some of our political leaders in the region do not have that zeal for sound political debates. In fact, some of our political leaders in the region seem to forget the oath they took before taking office. They made a promise to remain faithful to the Constitution; they made a promise that they would serve the people on the basis of integrity, accountability and transparency. How easily some leaders fail in promoting the common good! Even the 'grass-roots man' on the street seems to be uprooted from the political process. Good governance is what we need within the political process. Without good governance, the political landscape in the region will eventually fall apart. In fact, one critical element to good governance is "sound political debates" that seek to inform the electorate on critical issues. It is the business of the electorate to know. They have a right to know.
A few weeks ago, it was reported by the local media that another political debate is carded for sometime this year (2013) in T&T, where the electorate will again get an opportunity to listen to the new strategies and the way forward from the three political leaders. Normally, during these debates, a selected panel (well qualified persons) would question the leaders on areas of critical importance and the leaders in turn would seek to provide the most intelligent and well grounded response. Of course, their responses will determine whether or not these leaders have a good grasp as to what they are about in terms of good governance as well as integrity in public office. In fact, right after the debate, a few political analysts would again evaluate the political leaders as to how well they were able to inform the electorate. These debates are normally carried live on radio and television.
I believe the time has come when all political leaders in the region must encourage more political debates as means of educating and informing the electorate. As a patriotic Dominican myself, it is not often that we see in Dominica, political leaders discussing real burning issues in a form of public debates carried live. Let me remind our political leaders that what this young generation wants is sound political debates. I ask the question: When will the Commonwealth of Dominica witness its first political debate from all three political leaders in Dominica? I call on the integrity commission to assist in the organization and execution of such debates?
Rather than the usual contention among leaders especially on that campaign trail, why not raise our political landscape in the form of "sound political debates"? This is what our young generation craves for. Let the young people hear your ideas. Give the electorate a fair chance to critically evaluate your plans. In fact, political leaders must never be afraid to go before the electorate to be questioned on areas of concern. This, no doubt, will help give way for greater accountability and transparency in public office. This is all part of good governance. In fact, these are the things that will build a greater sense of trust and confidence in our political leaders.
Congratulations to the political leaders of Trinidad and Tobago, for seeking to elevate their political landscape. In fact, just recently, a number of programmes were initiated in order to help educate Secondary schools about "The Role of the Parliament".