Position:Letter to the Editor

Lynching from Lynch

In your September issue (NA Letters), David Saffery, writing from London, said that the infamous gospel according to William Lynch -- the white slave owner from the Caribbean -- was a hoax.

However, when proper research is carried out on the history of the plantocracy of the 17th/18th century Barbados, one will see the name of William Lynch featuring as one of the administrators who was seconded to North Carolina to assist in the mental and psychological control of the slave population, using divisive and inhumane methods.

The word "lynching" thus became a household word among the slave owners of that era. Since I live in the same parish that Lynch originated from, in the eastern region of the island, I think it is necessary to clarify Saffery's apparent misconception.

Iral Jabari Talma

Blair's double standard

St John, Barbados

Tony Blair's article (Spreading prosperity to Africa is in all our interest NA, March) would have been a good piece from a British prime minister had it not been distorted by the display of double standard and hypocrisy.

Blair noted that for Africa to prosper, there should be transformation in four areas: war on corruption, promotion of good governance, peace and international trade.

But he ought to be reminded that fighting corruption is a two-way process. Billions of dollars looted from African central banks are deposited in British and other Western banks. What is Blair doing to make sure that the money is returned?

What has he done personally to help President Obasanjo's efforts to get the $1.3 billion looted by Gen Sani Abacha and deposited in British and other Western banks returned to Nigeria? And Obasanjo has been fighting for over two years to get the money back!

When will Blair's government change the rules regarding banking secrecy, so that the banks holding the African loot would be easily identified and challenged in court?

How does Blair define good governance when the policy of his government is to pick and choose which country's leader is lectured on human rights and democracy, while economic assistance is poured into other countries regardless of the levels of corruption, human rights or democratic credentials?

I agree with him that Africa needs peace, but peace has to be equally and fairly applied, based on international conventions, not selectively when national interest and post-colonial prestige is at stake.

Blair lauded the success of British peacekeeping in Sierra Leone, what about Congo, Angola and Sudan?

On international trade, it is hoped that the ongoing round of WTO talks (which started in Doha late last year) will finally remove the last obstacles preventing free competition in the European markets. Only then can the words of Blair be taken seriously.

London, UK

Opiyo Oryema

Belgian apology a mockery

So Belgium has accepted its complicity in the murder of Lumumba and apologised for it? (NA, Feb). The apology is a mockery. Lumumba was assassinated because he was a visionary and could not dance to the tune of imperialists and the management of...

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