(JAMAICA OBSERVER) – Gaston Browne mouth piece and Labour Party sympathiser Melanius Alphonse has suddenly found his voice again, launching a series of fictional articles on a ‘news’ site called Caribbean News Now, which everyone knows is a fabricated farce ‘sponsored’ by certain politicians throughout the Caribbean pretending that it has some legitimacy as a news site.
‘Mel’ thinks that everyone is a fool, and that we don’t know that he is buddies with Antiguan PM Gaston Browne and Saint Lucia’s Kenny Anthony, apparent by the adoration he pours out on them, bowing at the feet of his demigod Gaston, dancing to the tune called like the paid pied piper he is. A little bit more and I’d say Maria Browne has to be more than a little concerned.
So he’s at it again, trying to throw stones at Harold Lovell and the UPP, while attempting to drag the Jamaica Observer and Sandals into the mud-slinging, and the voraciousness at which he is churning out his ‘Penny Dreadfuls’ (pulp fiction) can only mean one thing; it means that his boss, Gaston Browne is worried!
Just months ago Gaston was puffing his chest out claiming that the election would be a walkover. You see Gaston failed to realise that while many folks may have been born in the morning, it was not yesterday morning. So when he decided to ring the bell (over a year early mind you) he finally realised that the delusion he has been living in, fueled by sycophants like Melanie Alphonse, was just that, a delusion, and that the people of Antigua and Barbuda saw through his pettiness, his hatefulness, his arrogance, his contempt and his failure. More than anything, his failure.
Now that the chickens are coming home to roost, and Gaston realises this is no walkover, he is starting to panic. He is wielding hefty payouts to try and seduce political spin doctors, while calling his little foot soldiers like Melanie to order, demanding that they up the mud-slinging and ‘fake news’.
So self-anointed expert Melanius goes on a writing spree this week, trying to dust off all sorts of rubbished claims about the UPP, about the Jamaica Observer and about Sandals, trying to give the impression that Antigua and Barbuda had somehow achieved economic growth when its biggest resort was closed for three months, and when not one single new hotel had opened in the years Gaston has been in office. I mean, we all like a good story now and then but we can recognise a fairy tale when we see it.
Mel even tries to resurrect an old and ventilated issue of a tax claim in Saint Lucia, when it was subsequently made clear by government, Sandals and the international auditing firm involved that there was no basis for the US$24 million claim. Instead he conveniently forgot to mention that Sandals economic contribution to Saint Lucia last year alone was US$75 million – three times what the claim was.
And that over the past five years Sandals would have pumped just under US$500 million into the Saint Lucian economy. I haven’t even mentioned the 1,800 people working there. Or maybe he should mention the US$36 million a year that goes in the economy of Antigua and Barbuda from Sandals.
Anyway, my point is that these sick peddlers of misinformation like Melanius Alphonso are the viruses that are so deadly to our Caribbean countries, and threaten to keep us down rather than rise. They sow seeds of untruth and seek to hurt and injure people for the sake of personal gain and aggrandizement. If the rest of us, including the legitimate media allow them to escape scrutiny, then we are all to blame when the time comes to reap the whirlwind.