OPEN LETTER TO THE PRESIDENT

Permit me to draw your attention to Section 57 of the Constitution:

1b) where the office of Prime Minister is vacant and the President considers that there is no prospect of his being able within a reasonable time to appoint to that office a person who can command the support of a majority of the members of the Assembly, the President, acting in her own deliberate judgement, may dissolve Parliament.

In the absence of a contest for the leadership of the Alliance Lepep, did you speak with a sufficient number of its members to assure yourself that the ex-Prime Minister’s son would have majority support in the Assembly? Do you not believe that it is an essential principle of democracy for the Alliance Lepep to have held an open and transparent leadership contest? Perhaps Mr Collendavelloo would have opposed Mr Jugnauth Junior or Mr Badhain, after all what did he have to lose? Perhaps this hints at the real reason why Mr Duval left the Alliance.

Perhaps Mr Jugnauth Junior would have been unopposed, in which case a leadership contest would have been a formality. So what stopped the Alliance from holding one? Is it not possible that he would have been opposed? Is it not possible that the Alliance would have collapsed? Is it not possible that the government would have faced a vote of no confidence in the Assembly? Of course the Assembly is conveniently on recess for 2 months. Does not the timing of Mr Jugnauth Senior’s resignation have a Machiavellian odor to it?

You had the opportunity to make a wise choice: to insist that the Alliance hold a leadership contest. If they refused then you could have justifiably dissolved Parliament. Then we, the people, could have chosen our own Prime Minister rather than witnessing the anathema of an ex-Prime Minister crown his own son. You had the opportunity to act with integrity. Instead you chose to have your strings pulled, once again, like a puppet President and in so doing you have steered our fragile democracy down a perilous path.

We could have avoided the embarrassing prospect of our new Prime Minister, who spurned the chance to serve the community, spending a year in prison. It is unthinkable that the Privy Council will side with our Supreme Court in emasculating our anti-corruption laws and giving carte blanche to the nepotistic plundering of the public purse. His only chance is to prevent the appeal by decapitating the DPP. Any fool can see that the Prosecution Commission Bill is a thinly disguised mechanism to force the Judicial and Legal Services Commission to remove Mr Boolell for misbehaviour.

As you know, I have personal grievance against Mr Boolell. He has failed to explain why he prosecuted me for a crime that does not exist or justify why he has stopped nearly all prosecutions against the heir to his father’s party. But I will defend him when the alternative is far worse. When there is every prospect of our anti-corruption commission being crippled. When nothing can deter the government returning ministries to the building of shame or buying up more stranded assets of Ministers’ family and friends. And what new economic miracles will they dream up to multiply their never-to-be-explained wealth?

Can you sleep well at night? May be so – in luxury hotel beds pocketing your outrageously generous per diem on your far too frequent trips overseas. I guess you can rest assured, even if sooner rather than later, Mr Jugnauth Junior is deposed by the people. No doubt the next generation in government will be grateful for your complicity in turning our multi-party democracy into a multi-dynastic kleptocracy.

January 23rd was my birthday. But I could not celebrate on such a day of disgrace.

This letter was also published in Le Mauricien