Touria Prayag's Blog

Eight lessons for the DPP 20 March 2014

Posted in Uncategorized by touriaprayag on January 23, 2015

As Director of Public Prosecutions, you issued a
communiqué informing us that, in the Med Point
case, your offi ce has “concluded that there is
suffi cient evidence to initiate criminal proceedings
against Mr. Pravind Kumar Jugnauth for confl ict
of interest”. You also called for caution in
commenting on the above matter “in any way that
may jeopardise the conduct of the case”.
It is not our intention to “jeopardise the case” so
we are not going to comment on it. However, you
may have heard that the leader of the opposition
has expressed the opinion that your timing is “not
a coincidence” – a direct attack on the integrity
of your offi ce but you are big enough to defend
yourself. You will, however, allow us to give you
a few lessons on how to conduct your affairs to
avoid any negative comment in the future.
1. You should avoid taking decisions of this nature
at a time when the prime minister has expressed
his intention of coming out with a white paper on
electoral reform. Admittedly, the prime minister
has been talking about the white paper for the last
few months but what are a few months in the life
of the justice system?
2. Once the reforms have been announced, it
would be very bad timing to have criminal
proceedings initiated against Former Minister of
Finance Pravind Jugnauth. When people are busy
analysing how to get to power, it would be
considered in poor taste to spoil their fun. And,
naturally, once the election date has been decided,
announcing legal action against someone is totally
out of place.
3. You should wait for the remake discussions to
come to a conclusion. That means of course,
waiting for the opposition to fi nalise the number
of seats each party will walk away with, who will
have an investiture and who will be rewarded in
some other way and whether – in case of victory
– Shawkatally Soodhun will occupy the very
powerful position of vice-president of the republic.
Such life-changing matters, which every citizen
of this country is not sleeping at night thinking
about, should be considered fully by your offi ce.
That also means waiting for the tsunami to take
place, followed by the cooling-off period, the
macadams (hurdles) to be ironed out for the gallery
and the meeting of the central committee and the
delegates’ meeting to rubberstamp whatever
decision the leader of the opposition decides to
take. What’s another year or two?
4. You should also take into consideration major
happy events like our national day and unhappy
ones like the periods of mourning we have been
through. Your offi ce, sir, has to be sensitive to our
mood as a nation.
5. Consult our meteorological station and fi nd out
what the weather will be like and – hoping they
get it right for a change – decide on a day when
the temperature is just right for the people of this
country to hear the kind of news you are about to
6. Consult the religious bodies to make sure your
decision does not coincide with the festive season
of any particular religion. You do realise that the
announcement of your recent decision coincides
with the fasting period of at least two major
communities. A double whammy if you ask me.
7. Alternatively, you could conduct a survey – or,
better still, a referendum – to fi nd out how many
people would like to know where Rs145m of their
hard-earned money went and act accordingly. It
is always safe to consult people about how much
justice they have an appetite for.
8. In the end, the safest option may be to leave
alone anyone who is politically-connected one way
or the other. Concentrate all your efforts on those
of us who have no political protection. No one will
raise a voice in our defence so, though justice may
not be done, it will be seen to be done. That, in
third world countries, is what matters.


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