Minister Manickchand’s words ring hollow

Dear Editor,

My good friend and colleague, Minister Priya Manickchand has recently found tremendous form in writing in defence of Ms Geetanjali Singh, our hard-working and most qualified Deputy Auditor General, whilst in the process assailing myself and Anand Goolsarran. She, of course, simultaneously clouds the conflict of interest principle with what a number of women activists have legitimately described as sexist arguments.

Writing, however, seemed to have abandoned her when another prominent woman, Varshni Singh, was being humiliated by the then President. The then First Lady complained of ‘high tech domestic violence’, and had to suffer mosquito bites after being literally chased out of the Presidential bed chambers into the vehicles under State House where she was forced to sleep. Ms Manickchand, then Minister of Human Services, never offered as much as a whisper. I suppose she recused herself from deciding to make a statement in the face of such despicable injustice because she felt she was in a conflict of interest position. Or was it concern that she may have lost her lots next to her neighbour? Well, if the latter, this was even more grievous a conflict of interest. She was securing her benefits at the expense of her loss of principle. I deem it bloody hypocrisy!

This was not the only instance where the Minister lost her pen and her voice. A similarly hard- working woman and very qualified too, Ms Janette Bulkan, was denied a job simply because she was critical of the forestry sector in a number of well-publicised articles. Again not a single word then, from the now garrulous Minister.

My dear Priya, you will endear yourself to all women when you are consistent in your fight for them….. all of them, not some. And stop throwing stones when you have such a fragile glass house.

Yours faithfully,
Khemraj Ramjattan

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