Monday, September 30, 2013

Rules, Regulations, Policies and Procedures, The Jamaican Way




In my previous blog I emphasized the need for Rules, Regulations, Policies and Procedures as a requirement for any system to operate properly. It is important that everyone understands the Rules, Regulations, Policies and Procedures and follow them if the system is to realize its full potential. However there is such a thing as having too much Rules, Regulations, Policies and Procedures, so much so that it retards the fluent operation of any system and introduces too much Red Tape and Bureaucracy which also provides a platform for corruption to thrive, as such a healthy balance is required for optimal performance of every system.


I have worked in companies that have in place too much Rules, Regulations, Policies and Procedures, they were way too conservative when it comes to change, with computer software code that is never touched once it is released into production, as updates and patches are never applied. One manager I worked with implemented a core piece of third party software in 1989 but refused any attempts by the company to apply any updates to the production code, maintaining the same code base for a decade but all hell broke loose when year 2000 came around because the Y2K version of the software had in it 10 years of changes. All the interfaces had changed and were now not compatible to all other interconnected systems.


There is no system more bogged down with Red Tape and Bureaucracy like the system of Government and the Jamaican Government is no exception. It gets even worst when the people of Jamaica are unable to separate their Political Life from their Professional Life, when nothing is being done in the interest of the country but instead in the interest of the Political Parties and peoples ego. The general public is getting very sick and tired of the counterproductive relationships between the Government, the Opposition, the Office of the Contractor-General (OCG), The Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) and The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP). It seems none of these groups exist to work in the interest of the country as everything descends into chaos, public hardcore bare knuckle Cage Fight as they curse out each other in public, accusing each other of corruption. Entities within the Government Structure behave as if they live in a low income tenement ghetto yard with daily brawls.


This Five Ring Circus does not look to me like they exist to facilitate each other and work together in the National interest as they seem to spend every working hours running interference against each other, putting up road blocks at every turn, trying to kill plans and stagnate the country. All our Governments both JLP and PNP has suffered this same faith. On a rare occasion of unity, representatives from both the PNP and the JLP on July 18, 2010, expressed their concern that the Contractor General seems to exist, to block their every move and kill every plan. I am not against the contractor General, that department could play an important role in our society. They should exist to make sure the dealings of the Government is above board, open and honest but what I do not see is any cooperation, they are not helping the Government to achieve their goals, nothing like “ OK we do not agree with how you are going about this, so let’s sit down like educated adults and see if we can work together to come up with a solid plan to move the country forward" but instead public political bashing.




Why is it that people who are supposed to be the most intelligent and educated among us, are finding it so hard to utilize basic Problem/Solution techniques? It is the norm now for various Governments regardless of Political parties, to announced various grand development plans only to have those plans blocked, bogged down and rejected by either The Office of the Contractor-General (OCG), The Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) and The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and the party in opposition will never give up a juicy chance to side against the sitting Government. Then the Jamaican people choose sides, depending on which political parties they support and the war begins, not realizing that they are poorer for it, shooting ourselves in the foot, cutting off our nose to spite our face. Sometimes I have to wonder what the members of a party is thinking when they are in opposition (regardless of party), do they really believe that all they have to do, is to oppose their way into Government and then this “Oppositioning” will magically stop after they have achieved their goals? Because as soon as they take control of the Government, what they dish out while in opposition will come back to haunt them as the new Opposition Tun-Up the “Oppositioning”, activate their operatives in the various NGO and sectors with instruction to block every move ensuring failure of the new Government… and yes the cycle of accomplishing  fuck-all continues since this is all nothing but a big game to these people.



Both Government and Opposition exist in the theoretical world, both have a long list of potential plans and a whole heap of what ifs and at times they make various speeches about what they wanted to do while in Government BUT… this, that and the other thing happened preventing them from doing it. Currently we have a couple theoretical schemes being thrown around and have been around for some time now. Our Governments talk a lot about mega Alternate Energy Projects but we have yet to see any. Our Governments talk about increase water supply projects but we still suffer from water shortage and lock offs. Our Government talks about new 380 Megawatt energy power plants but this is only a pipedream, still nothing. Our Governments talk about a Logistic Mega HUB to take advantage of the Panama Canal expansion but all we have to show for it is more big chat, conflicts and confrontations. Our Governments talk and talk and talk, we wait and wait and wait and still nothing is delivered, nothing is done.

Shaw bites back - Former finance minister takes on Christie for rebuttal of statements on LNG contract award

We were wrong - JLP was bullied by the then contractor general into ending LNG deal with EXMAR

"We, the Cabinet approved EXMAR as the preferred bidder and we allowed this nonsense perpetrated by the then contractor general to throw us and derail this programme. If it was not derailed, whether we were in power or not, LNG would be rolling out in Jamaica right now and I say that without any fear of contradiction," declared Shaw."......

One of my favorite pastimes is to read news from the other countries that share the Caribbean Sea with us, just to see how they are dealing with the day to day struggles of life. The other day I started reading news from the Dominica Republic and I found out that.

  • Dominican Republic opened the ‘biggest’ 430 megawatts power plant at a cost of US$707.0M. Wärtsilä has been awarded the contract to supply a complete dual-fuel power plant to the Dominican Republic. The turnkey project has been ordered by Empresa Generadora de Electricidad Haina (EGE Haina), the largest power generation company in the Dominican Republic. The Quisqueya II power plant ordered by EGE Haina will feature 12 Wärtsilä 50DF generating sets in combined cycle running primarily on natural gas, but with the capability to switch to heavy fuel oil as needed. The contract was awarded on 27th December 2011 and the finish project was up and running on 23rd September 2013. So while we fight, squabble, throw words and tear Jamaica apart for political power, thanks to the Five Ring Circus, countries like Dominican Republic are moving ahead, working, working, working, implementing, implementing, implementing.I have no faith in Jamaica and Jamaicans, no faith in the Political Parties, no faith in the Government, no faith in the Opposition, no faith in the OCG, OUR, DPP and any other organizations to actually facilitate the building of the 360-megawatt power plant.

  • In Panama, Dominican Republic was touted as the Caribbean’s Official Hub at Expo Logistics Panama 2013, the most important regional event in the transport and logistics field in all its classifications: sea, air, or land in a backdrop of business contacts to get up to speed on the market’s latest trends…. Jamaica was not even mentioned, who cares about our idle chatter and internal power struggles. 


  • Santo Domingo.- Solar panels from SolarWorld, the largest U.S. solar manufacturer for more than 35 years, now power the largest solar-electric installation in the Dominican Republic. The 1.5-megawatt solar array sits near the runway of Cibao International Airport, the country’s third largest airport. The system, a complete solar solution featuring SolarWorld’s high-quality solar panels and proprietary racking, generates enough clean energy to support about half of the airport’s energy needs.…. I have always said that a part of the PetroCaribe savings should have been used to invest in Alternate Energy Projects, Jamaica should have had as least 4 or 5, 5 acre Solar farms up and running by now….
  • Santo Domingo. – A local company on Wednesday unveiled Dominican Republic’s biggest rooftop solar panel array, located at the Frederic Schad logistics complex, as part of its ongoing effort to consume less energy and reduce greenhouse gases. 
  • Santo Domingo. – China will hold its Fifth Trade Fair Sept. 26-29 in the Dominican Republic, seeking to strengthen economic relations with the country, the organizers revealed.
  • Santo Domingo. – The Dominican Republic's organic food production has grown continually over the last few years, a fact that makes the country the world leader in bringing such foods to market, official sources pointed out. 
To put it simply, at this rate Jamaica is destined to accomplish absolutely... Fuck-All! Thanks to the Five Ring Circus we call the Government, the Opposition, The Office of the Contractor-General (OCG), The Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) and The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and we can throw in the Jamaican people as circus clown to make this a  Six Ring Circus.



Gerry Potter Poet - How Do You Respect Fuck All ?
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In Jamaica, our Political System Stagnates us, our political system is keeping us back, our political system is one of our biggest problems and because our political system is run by Jamaicans then the problems we face are all created by Jamaicans. We are a tribal country and we are not afraid to destroy this country so that our tribe, the political party can gain power. So while we fight and stab each other in the back, block any path to progress, other countries are moving ahead, they work together in their National Interest to build a nation state that takes care of their people… No one in the world cares about the JLP or the PNP, when anyone in the world thinks about Jamaica’s failures they are not thinking PNP Tribe or JLP Tribe mash up the country and the only thing that comes to their minds is that Jamaicans are unable to govern themselves.

The Medieval Feudal System is the Social and Political System adopted and practiced by Jamaica and Jamaicans…

Update: 10/4/2013





The company that was awarded the contract to build the 360 Megawatt Power Plant failed to come up with the down payment and as a result the contract will now be awarded to the second bidder who must also come up with the money.

It is getting more and more obvious that the Government regardless of party and the regulatory bodies cannot work together, their relationship is counterproductive and this is because of a Jamaican trait, “two bulls cannot be in the same pen”. We do not know how to work together when power is equally shared and the master-servant context does not exist. The Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) is not taking any shit from the Minister and the Minister is not taking any shit from OUR and as a result the country stagnates, same goes for OCG and DPP.  I can imagine them now… “di Minister boy caan tell me what fi do, a di GG me report to”… This is a power struggle where egos collide and alpha male personalities clash and no development will ever take place under such conditions. The General Public is so busy and obsessed with the witch hunt for corruption that they forget who they voted for and who they did not vote for…

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It would be unfair to of me not to also list the Progressive Projects taking place in Jamaica at this time.

  • The 6.3 MW New Maggoty Hydroelectric Power Plant in St. Elizabeth Parish, Jamaica will add much-needed renewable power to the country’s national energy grid.MWH designed the $33 million (USD) project that is the ninth hydroelectric power station in Jamaica. The company Mott MacDonald was contracted for the hydro expansion scheme and and the project is schedule for the November 2013.
 
  • Wigton Windfarm Limited, a subsidiary of the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica (PCJ), is reporting encouraging findings from a recently completed Wind Resource Assessment, which identified four locations suitable for wind energy development with a combined potential generating capacity of 212 million KWh annually. The study, which assessed 24 prospective sites across the island, highlighted four locations which were found to have "excellent energy yield (each) featuring more than 5,300 MWh/a". Wigton Windfarm Limited is now embarking on a wind farm expansion, installing an additional 18 MW of generating capacity from nine (9) 2 MW Vestas V80 wind turbines.
 
  • Caribbean Broilers goes solar with pig farm, after years of trying unsuccessfully to convince pig farmers to invest in climate-controlled barns as a means of growing pigs more efficiently, CB is building its own farm on property in Hill Run, St Catherine with 192 panels on the barn. A solar-powered pig farm will allow the company to offset the use of the utility grid. This offset yields tremendous savings, resulting in a four-year payback of the system



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More On The Hypothetical Logistic HUB!



First let me state my position regarding the Logistic HUB, I am against the use of Goat Islands purely on environmental reasons and nothing anyone can say or do would make me change my mind. I am not against the concept of a Logistic Hub, I think it is a good thing, I am not against the Chinese people and I am certainly not against Chinese Investments or any Foreign Direct Investments, all are welcome so long as Jamaica and Jamaicans benefit.

The Logistic-Hub is slowly becoming a dirty word coupled with a disturbing trend of increase anti-Chinese rhetoric which is almost racist. The question one must ask is, does the Logistic HUB equal Goat Island or is Goat Island just a small part of the Logistic Hub Concept? I know what I am opposed to, Goat Islands to me is a deal breaker, it is the point at which I am prepared to walk away from the deal even if it means the end of the entire HUB concept, that is… if (HUB="Goat Island") then HUB-DONE!!!

Us Jamaicans have not had a proper mature debate/discussion about the future of the entire Logistic Hub to date, there has been a lot of screaming and shouting on all sides but no mature grown up debate, no Pro versus Con debate, everything is speculation and made up to prove a point depending on which party you support.

The Government knows the position of the environmentalist but what about the entire country? We have no idea what Jamaicans are thinking and as such how can any groups organize a movement without knowing what percentage of the Population is for and what percentage is against…? These things matters, this is a numbers game because there is strength through numbers, majority rule but we have no idea of the numbers. We are in need of a national poll to try to find out what the Jamaican people are thinking, an indication of where most Jamaicans stand on this Goat Island issue.

I know where the genuine Environmentalist and people who would protest this vile attack on the environment, on our natural way of life, stands. These people would take the same position regardless of which party they support because these are people with principles. I think we all know where the Diehard Partisan Political Muppets, who I have next to no respect for and make up both parties (PNP or JLP), stands on this issue. The Opposition supporters will always oppose the sitting Government and in this case they are opportunistic environmentalist not because they care about the environment or Goat Island but because their party is not in power, people like these would not know principle is it got up and bitch slap them twice across the face, they represents 70% of the problems we face in Jamaica. The Government supporters will also blindly back their party in Government, totally useless the lot.

Foreign Investment is not the issue, what the potential problem might be is how the Government negotiates the terms of the agreements. Jamaica cannot afford to appear too needy but must stand firm on some basic demands, principles we will never betray. Many foreign non-Chinese investors got away with murder, the tourist sector is one such sector where some entities have never paid taxes and are given waivers to import whatever they want. The largest foreign investor to the United States of America is the Chinese they are investing in America in records numbers, same for the UK, Greece and Australia… So the problem is not Chinese investment but the terms of the agreements, not cutting corners because they wave a wad of cash. The opposition must be very careful how they curse out the Chinese because I remember Petrocaribe and Venezuela, you cursed both and then like hypocrites behaved as if it was God sent when you came to power.

Everything is a negotiation, I have no problem with Chinese investments, no problem with the Chinese… so long as I can see where it benefits Jamaica and we establish rules and guidelines and policies that we are not prepared to go against… In countries where investments goes wrong it is because those Governments did not enforce any rules, guidelines or policies, no standards, so why would a foreign country look out for your interest if you are not prepared to lookout for it yourself… American and UK companies invested in our Hotel industry, imported their upper and middle Managements and employ Jamaicans to spread the bed because our Government appeared too needy…

I do not see any other countries lining up to outbid the Chinese, no one else wants a piece of this. I know most Jamaicans wanted white America, UK and EU foreign investments because we have been conditioned to value them over all others but truth be told they are not coming, because they are all in China looking for Chinese investments for their own economy, they are also flat broke trying to survive this world recession. I do not see a long line of global investors lining up trying to get a piece of this, so I do not know where this free loyalty to America and the United Kingdom comes from. If this HUB was such a hot item and we are the center of this hot item then where are the other high end investors fighting to get a piece of this sweet potato pudding?

2 comments:

  1. what must i say than a very interesting article on Jamaica, some may support my views and some part i will disagree.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Why aren't you running for office?

    ReplyDelete