- “It is just a case of the house slaves carrying out the wish of the master.” – Otto Sam
KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent, May 17, IWN – Otto Sam, the public servant who was fired on Wednesday for a letter he wrote in a newspaper in July 2012 says he will sue the government and write a book about his run-ins with the Dr. Ralph Gonsalves Unity Labour Party administration.
Sam was a public servant for 33 years but his letter of dismissal did not say if he would be compensated for his service to the nation.
He was an educator for 30 years before he was transferred to the National Emergency Management Organisation three years ago.
He received a letter on Wednesday saying that his status as a public servant was terminated.
In his letter last year, published in two local newspapers under the caption “NEMO –an interesting organisation”, Sam said NEMO’s staff has not met since September 2011, although the 2012 hurricane season began on June 1.
The Public Service Commissions (PSC) took action under Section 45 of its regulation and sent Sam home on half pay, pending the outcome of an investigation.
Sam told I-Witness News in interviews on Thursday and Friday (today) that he was notified of the dismissal by a hand-delivered letter signed by Chief Personnel Officer, Kattian Barnwell.
He was assigned to NEMO but his last official post in the Public Service was headteacher of the South Rivers Methodist School, and the letter said he was relieved of both assignments.
While the dismissal stems from the letter last July, which the State argued amounted to misconduct under Article 3.2 of the Civil Service Orders, the decision to fire him was made a long time ago and the tribunal, chaired by assistant Director of Public Prosecution, Colin John, was “just a show”, Sam said.
He said it was “very interesting” that Assistant Director of Public Prosecution, Colin John, chaired the tribunal.
And if you listen to the tribunal, you will see that what transpired had nothing to do with this decision.”
Sam said he plans to appeal to the PSC but the court and God will also have their say.
“We will appeal to that (the PSC). But they are the ones who make the decision. It is unlikely that they will change their decision. We will appeal to it as part of procedure. I expect the court to base [its ruling] on what is before it in law, not on feelings.”
“… And I know that God will prevail so I am not really worried about it one way or the other…
“I think what is happening here, there is no regard for the judicial principles, etc. in terms of the Service Commissions. It is just a case of the house slaves carrying out the wish of the master. And, obviously, we will have to ask the court to review their action.”
Sam said that before going public with his newspaper article, he had written to the director and deputy director of NEMO, the Permanent Secretary, and the Chief Personnel Officer about the issues he raised.
“… and the issues raised were surface issues really. They are within the line of 10.1 of the Constitution and I didn’t transgress there, clearly. It is an issue of one’s constitutional right being violated,” he said.
Clause 10.1 of the Constitution speaks to freedom to hold, receive and express ideas.
Sam has been a prolific writer of letters in the newspaper, expressing his opinion on a range of issues under the ULP administration — of which he was a staunch supporter — and its predecessor, the New Democratic Party government.
He said of the ULP administration reaction to dissenting voices:
“What we are clearly seeing, it is an effort to have one rat in the hole, there ought o be no other voice in this country, it is an effort to intimidate people. We have seen the worst of it all. We have never seen it like this, for sure. Everybody must be silent, once you are not praising, once you are not idol worshiping, and I am not from that school.”
Of his dismissal, Sam said:
“I don’t want to say that it is political but it is clear that the actions of the Service Commissions, as it relates to my transfer, as it relates to this matter, … there is no basis, there is no rational, we cannot see anything. So, clearly, the instructions are coming from elsewhere…
“I think the actions of the Service Commissions over the last three years was meant to hurt me — damage my professional career, create particular situation of hurt and that is clear.”
Sam said that for two years, he did “virtually nothing” at NEMO, a situation, he said, that contravened his letter of appointment.
But Sam is stoic in the face of the latest development.
“I lived for 17 years without working and God kept me. I think he is able to keep me this period so I am not too worried. … I don’t think this matter is bigger than Him. I think it is in his hands, in his control.”
Sam is married and has children, but says he does not want pity.
“I have the things that people do. I have bills to pay at the end of month. I have a family to take care of. I have my mortgage to take care of. I don’t want to sound as if I am complaining, because I don’t want any sympathy or pity from anybody. I firmly believe that God will have the final say on this and have the final laugh on it,” Sam said.
“I will give my full views on all these matter, probably in a publication a year from now,” he further said.
Otto, if you had done your JOB that TAXPAYERS of this BLESSED NATION had PAID you to do, you would not have FIND yourself in this PREDICAMENT.
In other words, you were not HIRED to PLAY POLITICS with your JOB. You’re HIRED to DO YOUR JOB.
That said; I EXPECT OTTO SAM to DECLARE he is a member of the NDP and is likely to run for political office on the NDP ticket. LOL
VINCYPOWA, what we have seen over the years that Otto Sam is a much bigger man than you are, unlike you he’s not a wimp hiding behind a false name. He doesn’t sell his soul like you have, and he is not frightened of the Obiman.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights states: “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference, and impart information and ideas through any media regardless of frontiers”
This Marxist regime has no consideration for human rights whatsoever. If we had voted yes at the referendum for the new constitution, we would really be in the tish. It was loaded with things that would of stopped anyone criticising the fat man, by now he would of been our president, perhaps like Chavez, for life, which God cut short.
The referendum also stopped to a certain extend our total amalgamation with ALBA, we would of been by now a communist leg of something much bigger. But the demand from ALBA was that the Queen had to go, once that happened we would of been at the mercy of a band of Marxist dictators and such like crap.
People like NANCYPOWA, would of profited from that, he would of been declared a hero of the revolution, as part of the creeping revolution that we must stay vigilant against.
We have been and remain in great danger from this regime, did anyone see how Gonsalves performed in parliament yesterday. What a disgusting human being, he is a tertiariusly semi-educated snob and yob, he thinks that when he is parliament he is edutainmentaly amusing, he is not.
His so called command of English, Bert Commijiong is one of the islands greatest English scholar intellectuals that I know, Gonsalves could do with some lessons from him, both in language and etiquette. Gonsalves comes across as a very nasty little fat man, sneering, evil grins and chuckles. It was a great reminder to me, of what a despicable character he actually is.
VINCYPOWA, You seem to have some inside information. I arrived at the same conclusion when Sam was transferred from teaching. In that position he would have had tremendous exposure to get in to politics.
Yes foolboy vincyPowa, a man is a man and he should not try to be less than one regardless to who is in power. Let me tell you foolish man, St.Vincent Government was like this over the decades.I guess you just come to Town and get fool. Many Educated and intelligent poeople became victims of the Government of SVG and I am including myself. A Govt in power has the tendency of abusing its power.They try to keep a special class down down so they will not get anything. Starting from the police force,I have seen police men been kept under the rank of sergent for over 25 yrs and they were the most loyal policemen.Foolish powa boy you want to know why? Just because they refused to get into the political arena. Ask Keith Miller how long it take for him to get his first promotion. Boy you seem like you just grow up wild and dumb, why don’t you go on the streets of ST.Vincent and learn something instead of talking shite all the time. Gonsalves need to give you a job on the damn gabbage truck because you are one of the biggest idiot in the whole of SVG. I believe that this head teacher was a threat to the Govt and so they had to get the rid of him . Tell me Fool, is there any body else the ULP Govt felt was a threat and get the rid of? You live in ST.Vincent but you acting;like you live on space ship. Stop running your dirty mouth on people!Grow up and ack like a real man- a man who can talk for injustice, poverty and discrimination of poor class. If all the black leaders were thinking like a dumb retard like you,Power possess people would have been still treating black people a little less than human,some people see it as continued slavery.
OTTO, please watch your back. Remember the Pen is mightier than the Sword. There are people who would like you to remain silent. Press on my brother. Politicians memory are very short just like fowl’s. They repeat the same mistake made by disgraced and ousted politicians of the past, because they refuse to learn from their errors. Its called the invincibility syndrome.
Ralph Gonsalves and the ULP can do as much as they want, but not for as long as they want. Retribution has a way of coming in double proportion. History is rife with examples of leaders and Governments who pursued a policy of discrimination and intimidation.
HHHHHHMMMMM! I am appalled and amaze after reading this! Luke Browne letter about Building & Loan caused such upheaval and still is! Is Luke Browne STILL EMPLOYED by the Government? SMH!
I am an ex civil servant from St Vincent going back to the sixties. Otto Sam, what we called you here in the US is “WHISTLE BLOWER.” I was once a whistle blower but I was not fired, I was transferred. I want to leave that buried. UI think family was involved. With you, I would have to praise you because you have shaken the checks and balances of government where it had become dormant. Get yourself some high tech lawyers and sue to the highest. Even appeal to the Prime Minister and Governer for justice. I am sure that the Prime Minister would not take sides as it is he who would profit from the outcome as justice would prevail. If you were a policeman and you see your mother breaking the law, you are supposed to arrest her. But at the same time you are the first judge and have to make a decision on what is the best road to travel at that time. In this. You see wrong doing and you did inform the upper command. No action was taken. So what is next. You evaluated that the corruption had higher roots so therefore your duty was to inform the tax payers which you did. And they fired. That is so wrong. You should have been hailed a hero and every tax payer should come out in your support. YES. GO GET THEM. GET RALPH ON YOUR SIDE. I THINK HE IS STRONG ENOUGH.
VINCYPOWA, forget all the crap that you write just to cloud the situation, are you saying that you agree with the way this man has been treated? Come on, tell us just so as we can reconfirm in our own minds what a toad you are.
It’s funny he should talk about “house slave”. When our beloved PM wanted a referendum the same “house slaves” ran to England to stop it.
I’ve knew Otto as little boy growing up in Diamonds.He is a quiet and very humble man.I can’t remember hearing him even raising his voice.This firing is politically motivated in my view.The transparency Ralph and the ULP spoke about on coming to office in 2001.I Guess it was just ‘sweet talk’.From day one this merged party had no will to practice democracy,for the leader is a communist,governing under a democratic constitution.Otto’s support was intrimential in helping the ULP come to office.So to was Junior Bacchus,Matthew Thomas and many others.But what is evident over the years while observing the landscape of vincentian politics,is the way people are being treated if they oppose or critize the government and more so the PM.We say on one hand that we are a striving democracy,adhearing to the princples of such practice but while such practices are in writing our actions is the opposite.And,what if the good fellow decide to enter the national elections on an NDP ticket? What’s so wrong with this? He was a servant of the nation for over thirthy years,just think about how many lives he have helped to mold and shape over those thirty years.I often ask these queastion.How many lives did the current PM impacted over his life before becoming the PM? How many persons did he employed as a lawyer? You know black people are our own enemies,we always want to pull down our own over ignorance.
Simpleton PETER, tell us FIRST how he was FIRED then I will ANSWER your QUESTION.
I just want to appeal to all the fanciful Vincies in voluntarily exile on here, to please refrain from making any critical comments in regards to the Gonsalves Administration. As a result of these comments our Prime Minister has been losing sleep and is in a state of absolute discombobulation;so much so, he thinks running a Government is like running a fowl coop..the man is losing his f’king mind. People I beg of you, if you don’t want to see our Prime Minister in a mental institution, please stop this wicked act at once.
By the way, it is people like Otto Sam who has contributed tremendously to the deterioration of the Prime Minister’s mental faculties with his constant criticism. Please do no be like Otto Sam if you have any sense of patriotism. If you are to follow any example as to how you conduct yourself in regards to the Prime Minister, look no further than the RESIDENT ULP APOLOGIST ON HERE(first comment). He is what the Prime Minister affectionately refer to as untutored, suffering from learned helplessness and a worthless dirty dog. This is what you thrive for if you are a patriotic fanciful Vincentian in voluntarily exile. Your beloved country will be better off with your servile praise of the Prime Minister and the admiration of future generations.
Thank you and walk in the light of the lord, am sorry, the Prime Minister, forever.
VINCYPOWA, what on earth are your referring to? “Simpleton PETER, tell us FIRST how he was FIRED then I will ANSWER your QUESTION”.
I never said he was fired, because what he did was resign in protest to the interference by Gonsalves in the due process. He was unwilling to be a phantom committee decision maker, when Gonsalves was making the decision for them.
Peter, are you saying that Kenton Chance is LYING when he wrote that “Otto Sam, the public servant who was fired on Wednesday” since you believe that he RESIGNED?
No I was muddled Otto Sam has been fired, apparantly today he got all the papers regarding his dimissal.
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