To DNO readers: Many of you know of my previous relationship with Charles Maynard who served as the Managing Director of the Chronicle when I was editor. The man I knew then stands in sharp contrast to the man of today.
What has changed?
Mr. Maynard reportedly told a close friend that he can be more useful being on the inside with Skerrit where he can exert moral influence on what is going on in contrast with being on the outside where his influence would be minimal.
Can he believed?
In order to stir the conscience of Mr. Maynard into exerting the influence he claims as the reason for lending support to the prime minister and his cabal, I wrote him the letter that appears below, more as a commentary on his dubious role in the Skerrit regime and also to highlight the moral dilemma he faces as his silence in the face of grave transgressions in the conduct of public policy raises questions about conflicts between his financial and economic interests and his ability to serve as the voice of reason.
His silence during the recent savage attacks on Sir Brian, a Belfast friend, speaks volumes. I wrote again to withdraw the letter only because I believe its contents could be misunderstood and misinterpreted.
On balance, however, I believe the contents of the letter should be placed in the public domain for comment and analysis.
Expect the unexpected
I wish to take this opportunity to address you as a personal friend and someone for whom I have had a considerable degree of respect for your contribution to Dominica. In fact at one point in our long relationship I thought of you as a mentor as we collaborated to bring some sanity to a nation torn by strife and uprising in 1979.
I especially remember your counsel re the role of the press in a democracy and the obligation of the media in general to serve as the beacon of light to illuminate the dark corners of society, a point emphasized in Michael Manley’s book, The Politics of Change, which you gifted to me when I took on the role of editor of the Chronicle of which you were managing director.
With this historical backdrop I must tell you, Charles, that I have a profound difficulty reconciling your lofty ideals a generation ago and your current association with a government which, in many ways, is violating the very principles and values which we sought to uphold in the pre and post independence era.
I understand that people change over time but such a radical transformation in your posture and in your support of a regime that is on the cusp of destroying the essence of what we have come to know as Dominica, has me deeply worried.
There is widespread speculation in the country that some of our countrymen who give implicit and explicit support to the Skerrit regime do so for economic and financial reasons. While I would not for a moment associate you with this kind of hypocrisy, I wish to make you a friendly offer, which, believe me, is undertaken in good faith and with the best of intentions.
In consideration of the fact that you are a man of stature and considerable credibility in the country, I would like to offer you a financial incentive to denounce the Skerrit regime publicly and thus place yourself on the right side of history.
I am prepared to make a substantial contribution to a retirement account in your name if you would volunteer to go on record to condemn the Skerrit regime as inimical to the future and the best interest of the country. I believe history would recognize your valiant effort should you demonstrate courage to act at the moment of the country’s need.
I await your reply and thoughtful consideration.
Your erstwhile friend
Julius B Sampson
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