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Justice may be blind — not deaf and dumb!

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Tue, Oct 30, 2012

Editor: “To whom much is given, much is expected.” The politics of our blessed isle has deteriorated to the point where individuals in positions of power will descend to the lowest level of moral conscience to tarnish and destroy the character of upstanding citizens in their quest to eliminate dissent, exact vengeance and settle scores, real or imagined.{{more}}

The ongoing trial of the Honourable Burton B. Williams on frivolous, trumped up charges, is testament to the above statement. The powers of the day are hell bent on making Mr Williams into something that he is not, something that is against the grain of his natural fibre. We would be damned to stand by silently and let this happen. It is with this in mind that we are here to set the record straight and let Vincentians outside of the South Windward community know the truth.

Mr Williams cannot but stand up for the oppressed and voiceless. It is in his DNA. His conduct on that day outside parliament building is in keeping with his motif, and a continuation of a tradition started by his late grandfather, Wesley “Scrusher” Williams of Biabou and his late father Waithley W. Williams of Biabou and Simon. To put things into context, we will here briefly introduce you to his father and grandfather.

Wesley “Scrusher” Williams, his grandfather, was a community activist/organizer in the Biabou community. Scrusher saw the need for a burial ground in the community and took it upon himself to petition the government of the day to acquire the current burial plot for use as a burial ground. He put pen to paper and went around the whole village asking for signatures to the petition for the burial ground. After he had received sufficient signatures, he then took the petition to the authorities. The authorities evidently were not happy with this development, especially since the property was owned by the “landowners class”. They sought to get to the bottom of the petition drive, and fearing dire repercussions, every signatory of the petition denied signing the petition. His grandfather was left to the will of the authorities and almost ended up in jail for committing what would then be deemed fraud. However, thanks to his activism and the wisdom of the authorities, the people of the Biabou, Simon, Bridgetown, Cedars, Spring and Peruvian Vale community can boast of the best Cemetery throughout St Vincent.

His father, Waithley, continued in the vein of activism and community work. He along with Ollivierre and others in the Biabou Village Council, were instrumental in the refurbishing of the Biabou Community Centre (Lodge). After Waithley moved to Simon, he continued his community work and could be called the Mayor of Simon. With his membership, deep commitment and dedication to the St. Vincent Labour Party, he was able to accomplish much. To name a few, running water for Simon, an Infants School and the cutting of the village road, from “Bottom River” to “Cut-Open.”

The Honourable Burton Williams you now see is simply carrying the torch. Taught by a father and mother the value of character and integrity, he eschews violence, evil and corruption. As parliamentary representative, he did more for the constituency of South Windward than any of his predecessors and successors. He is not obsessed with power, fame or riches, because his value system has taught him that those things are corruptible and have no virtue. Mr Williams has been a successful entrepreneur, creating employment in the community. Mr Williams’ only goal is for the betterment of his people and to seek justice for all.

The conclusion now is that for political expediency, our freedom and rights to peaceful protest are threatened with the unleashing of the court and public humiliation of an honourable citizen who happens to hold opposing political views. Mr Williams is strong and believes firmly in the cause. His character and integrity are unquestionable. His spirit cannot and will not be broken. He stands in the company of noble men, like his father and grandfather. Great leaders such as Martin Luther King, Mandela, Ebenezer Joshua, Mike Browne and Yvonne Francis-Gibson, have endured harsher treatment at the hands of politicians. Stand firm in your beliefs Burton, and know that you have the unwavering support of your nine siblings, who have authored this letter. Whom God has blessed, let no man curse!!

D. Eric Williams

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