Corruption at Customs is nothing new, it never seems to change
Stabroek News letter, Friday 18 April 2008
I have noted the recent corruption probe at Customs House, and I am
quite surprised at the news it is generating. Everyone in Guyana is
aware that there is corruption at the GRA. This is no surprise or
ground shattering revelation, in fact I am quite surprised that the
media is actually bothering to report on it.
A cursory glance at the assets acquired by these public servants, the
vehicles they drive, their lifestyles would have told any idiot with
an IQ of -2.6, that exact tale. But the Management, which should bear
full responsibility, time and time again, choose always to ignore. The
usual mantra taken out of the President's Hand Book? 'Show us the
evidence!' said in unison. Evidence which even the blind can see.
What is quite surprising is that it is the President, no less, who has
to initiate the probe. This is a serious indictment on the people who
run the GRA. But then again, hardly surprising, when not so recently
the GPOC attempted to place cameras in the Customs designated area of
the GPOC, designed to root out the established drug network, they met
with the full resistance of the GRA.
So I guess the President will once again supposed-ly have to
personally run down the culprits at the GRA, that all and sundry are
fully aware of. But like the duty free, dolphin and milk scam issues,
when anointed people are involved, events will be caught up in the
myriad of court issues, poor inexperienced prosecutions, union issues,
eventual governmental complacency, supervening events ie Carifesta
(where we will celebrate our glorious mediocrity), dogs biting people,
Ignition Concert, local cricket at the Bourda sward, and inevitably
will die its predictable wasted and natural death. A few people will
be dispatched via their luxury rides to their luxury homes, to live in
peace and harmony with their corrupt nouveau riche neighbours, go to
church on Sundays and prepare for the hereafter, and the big ones will
continue to nest at Customs House, at the usual expense of the
Guyanese overburdened tax payers.
The end result? Millions of hard earned taxpayers monies will be
churned into investigations, meetings, superficial re-workings of the
existing system and high paid consultants who will repeat what has
been said over and over before. The real end result? - Brisk business
as usual at Customs House.
No wonder Naipaul is so caustic on us in the Caribbean.