Sunday, 21 July 2013
TRANSMISSIONS FROM THE TWILIGHT ZONE OF JERSEY DEMOCRACY
Harking back to the early days of this blog I publish below a handful of updates on recent happenings within the tiny Neo-Feudal State on Britain's doorstep. A fairly long read perhaps but 4 separate stories with facts you certainly won't see in the Jersey mainstream media...
ESC and the strange case of the Starting Pistol 'incident'...
Following on from a suppressed story I broke a few weeks ago it has been confirmed that a teacher has now been charged over this incident. An incident that revolved around the said pistol being discharged in the school sports hall and injuring - though thankfully not seriously - a male pupil's eyes. The judicial aspect to this case must now be allowed to run its course through the courts.
However, the alleged serious failings within standard ESC policy in the light of such incidents must also be addressed over the summer as a matter of urgency. This must culminate whatever the findings - and let us hope that it proves a situation retrievable for all involved - in a statement being made to the States Assembly by the ESC Minister. Why?
99% of teachers do a great job
In first stating for the record that, though highlighting the very serious concerns alleged to me by the mother of the injured pupil i.e. his allegedly not being taken to hospital by staff; his being kept on the premises until the end of the day; the correct ESC reporting procedures not being adhered to; and lastly - the claim that no one at the school ever contacted the mother herself, this is NOT in any way an attack by me on the teaching profession generally.
I have always supported the teaching profession and will continue to do so. 99% of teachers do an often thankless and damned good job. However, when I come across things that are not as they should be - such as in the suspension policy review I chaired for Scrutiny - I will highlight these.
It is perhaps stating the obvious but with a record like ESC and other childrens' services have come to be lumbered with thanks to a number of figures 'at the top' (departmentally and politically)following the HDLG scandal - not to mention instances of decent, ordinary Jersey parents being hit with appalling 'gagging' orders simply for standing up to be counted when their children have been victimised - that ESC still has a long way to go to prove it is wholly committed to both transparency and accountability. Unfair on so many this undoubtedly is - but there you go.
The Bald Truth behind Option B and its leading lights' attitude to democracy...
With Special Agent the 'B Team Bug' recently joining the Ministerial Mole in my growing squad of Establishment Party infiltrators I can now reveal a very telling incident which took place at a meeting of the gang just prior to the recent States debate on Senator Bailhache's hijacked Electoral Commission referendum.
During the meeting, or so the 'Bug' tells the story, it came to be argued by a minority of the B Team's foot-soldiers that the proposals would never get through the States unless it was tweaked to actually provide some fairness in representation to the third of the population living in St. Helier. Fairness of the sort being proposed by both I and Deputy Andrew Green. Yet what happened next? Apparently the minority were turned upon and ridiculed by B Team Grandees such as former Senator Horsfall.
What is the former Senator really after?
Now I'm sure you'll remember the ex-Senator - he was a key figure in the move to risk Jersey putting all of our economic eggs into the one basket of the Finance industry. He was also a prime saboteur of the Clothier proposals he was meant to champion. He also just happened to have started out as an Option A supporter this time - even telling the Electoral Commission (in my presence) that the Constables had to go in the interests of democracy!
The bottom line in all of this? Don't be fooled by the bleating voices of politicians like Deputy Sean Power: most of the key drivers behind Option B are interested only in cementing total control of the States via ensuring massive over-representation for the smaller country parishes. For true democracy they care not as their actions reveal.
A brave man reduced to throwing himself on his knees in the Royal Square to plead for help against the 'justixce' system meant to help him...
Can anyone imagine that they would lightly take the decision to throw themselves down on their knees in Jersey's Royal Square to plead for assistance? No - i can't either. yet this was what one brave man, Mr Sam Canon felt he had no choice but to try just before last Tuesday's States Sitting.
Now the intricacies of Sam's case will be unfolded on the Voiceforchildren blog and possibly here two over coming weeks. But until such time let me just say that I took up Sam's case - one of an ever-growing number - because not only has he had to suffer wrongly for years; his case also has elements of just about every corruption and failing you could hope to (or actually would hope NOT to) find in a so-called justice system.
'Reporters' who apparently don't want stories
The Jersey mainstream media were all advised of what was going to happen. It should have undoubtedly have made a great, if deeply worrying news story. Yet guess what? Only reporters from the local ITV bothered to turn up to record it. Do they seriously wander why so many feel the Jersey Establishment and the media go hand-in-hand in keeping injustice out of the headlines? Fortunately, the excellent Team Voice was there to record the event; and I believe a further full length interview with this brave man will be available shortly.
And finally - the latest in the shameful saga of Le Breton-gate...
This week the Bailiff once again blocked a perfectly legitimate personal statement which I had sought to make. This having been found 'guilty' by the now defunct Simon Crowcroft led PPC for allegedly breaching the code on e-mail communications by asking for opinions on Public Sector pay negotiations and any justice system problems.
Now leaving aside the very telling fact that out of thousands of recipients the only complaints about my 'breach' were from none other than Chief Minister Gorst and one of his own pen pushers (I actually had 30 times the number of contacts of either expressed support or new information!) the aspect I want to focus on here is in regard to what it confirms yet again about the ease by which justice in Jersey can be manipulated and even abused.
That a politician can even be questioned over asking States employees to contact him if they have any points or concerns to raise on pay negotiations really says all that needs to be said. Yet when it comes to 'justice' what we saw here was an example of why the so-called 'dual role' of the Bailiff has to go.
This anachronism has no place in a 21st century democracy
Just as with Shona's blocked statement back in April; once again faced with a statement that highlighted concisely how he had, through his own office, allowed an impossibly conflicted jurat to sit on our defamation case, the Bailiff took off his 'hat' as the criticised Head of the Judiciary and put on his other 'hat' as Head of the Legislature to block the statement and thus prevent the criticism!
Not just this, of course, but also the wholly fair and warranted criticism that the Bailiff's Office had allowed - for a staggering 14 years* - a man who was happy to refuse to consider evidence against a sickening paedophile to sit in judgement of countless other cases. Cases where the said jurat, John Le Breton's ONLY responsibility was to examine and weigh up evidence before reaching a decision based on this!
I ask readers: is it really any wonder that an ever growing number of Jersey people - decent, ordinary people like we ourselves - are now coming forward (just take a look at Voiceforchildren's compilation of just a few of them) feeling that Jersey's 'justice' system is nothing more than a vehicle for oppression?
Sour grapes? Hardly - everyone should be entitled to justice. And in our own case Jurat John Le Breton has been caught bang-to-rights no matter how much he might try and wriggle. Indeed, it would actually be almost funny were it not so serious to read his excuses as quoted in a letter to us from the Deputy Bailiff.
If you made these excuses up people would laugh
He has to admit here that he has socialised with a director of the paper's owning company - even at each others homes - on a number of occasions just in recent years. He even wonderfully tells us that he contends 'there was no SIGNIFICANT relationship prior to his becoming a jurat'! No I am not making this admission up - i honestly doubt I have the imagination. Then, of course, there is the further fact that the jurat's social relationship actually goes back a whole lot longer - back at least to when he and the director's spouse were both teachers at Victoria College where Jervis-Dykes carried out his sickening abuse.
Yet will the powers that be now seek to prevent our wholly warranted application to appeal against this travesty of justice? Well, we already know the lawyers for the newspaper and their clients are desperate not to see it happen.
Strasbourg really maybe the ultimate answer
Of course, that it really shouldn't need a European Court of Human Rights to put this miscarriage of justice right is undeniable - at least to anyone who genuinely believes in justice for all. Yet maybe ultimately washing Jersey's self-soiled linen in full view of an international audience is what it will take to wake the UK justice Ministry from its slumber and make those who allowed these travesties to happen finally get their house in order?
Keep the Faith. If we can you can.
NMM. It really was 14 years!