‘Une girouette qui tourne au gré du vent’

Points to Ponder

By Lex

A First Point: The two parties that have been in the limelight lately are the MSM and the MMM. The politicians people have been talking about the most are Paul Bérenger and Sir Anerood Jugnauth. I am not saying that these politicians are the most popular but this reminds me of what one politician used to say: ‘Talk about me even if you will swear at me, criticize me however much you like but never forget to talk about me.’

People have been talking about Paul Bérenger because he had almost agreed with Pravind Jugnauth on the principle of a 50-50 coalition with the MSM. But he immediately thereafter went back on his word and started negotiating with Navin Ramgoolam. Thereafter he started to talk publicly about an agreement reached à 99% with the leader of the Labour Party on most of the issues discussed. Now, all of a sudden, he has announced that he is going back to the MSM for his ‘remake 2000’ — the famous coalition of 50-50 — and this time he is pointing an accusing finger towards the Labour Party as the villain of the piece. Talk of a girouette qui tourne au gré du vent!

I doubt if Paul Bérenger is at all conscious of the cavalier manner in which he treats Mauritians. Have his followers become so meek as to be unable to tell him that his behaviour is not acceptable or are they are dumb as the leader, or is it that they just do not care because they are fed up?

After quite a long time, Sir Anerood Jugnauth addressed a press conference of the MSM with Pravind Jugnauth as the leader. At that conference, it was announced that Sir Anerood would take over as the leader of the MSM. We have always considered Sir Anerood to be the real leader of the party; he was and is still the leader of the MSM, just as Paul Bérenger was and is the leader of the MMM. Without either of the two there cannot be an MMM nor an MSM. Events have proved this to be the case.

The MSM was very happy with its 50-50 deal with the MMM; we can well understand that its morale took a beating when Paul Bérenger started negotiating with the Labour Party. However, the statement of Paul Bérenger that an alliance with the Labour Party is out of question has given some cheer to the MSM. But it would seem the MSM people still cannot trust the MMM’s leader for they believe in the saying once bitten twice shy.

Can the Mauritian electorate have any trust in Paul Bérenger? Is he in too much of a hurry to accede to the post of Prime Minister, at any cost whatsoever? Does he want to win a general election for once on his own strength, without an ally? How far can he go to achieve his objective? How should we judge Sir Anerood Jugnauth and Pravind Jugnauth on the whole episode of this ‘danse macabre’?

We cannot understand our local politics at all, and that’s only because of the politicians.

* * *

Bring back capital punishment

A Second Point: Seriously, is it not time to introduce or reintroduce the death sentence or capital punishment for drug dealers? I do not understand why government is so soft vis-à-vis those responsible for the destruction of the lives of so many innocent Mauritians. When the punishment is lenient, of course the offences tend to go up. Do not tell me that the number of drug dealers has gone down or that drugs are not is available on the market.

Let us bring back capital punishment and the problem of drugs will be reined in. . The obvious example is Singapore where the authorities are particularly severe with drug dealers, which is why drug trafficking in the city-state is more or less non-existent. We want such a country où il fait bon vivre.

Can we request a Member of Parliament who has the welfare of the people at heart to put a question to the Prime Minister as to whether he will seriously consider the introduction of the death sentence for drug dealers and if so whether he intends to do so during the present mandate?

* Published in print edition on 10 August 2012

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