IT was a lustrous and paid for advertisement about Peter O’Neill that appeared in The National newspaper of Monday 21 June.
It was political propaganda.
And it had been deliberately crafted to divert, mollify and diffuse the focus of the nation on the possible impending arrest of the prime minister in relation to his alleged corrupt involvement in siphoning off K71.8 million public funds in the direction of Paul Paraka Lawyers.
And its core argument, that political and administrative stability is “absolutely necessary” to achieving socio-economic prosperity, was a cunning decoy to distract the attention of the people away from the prime minister and what is now called Parakagate.
The blatant nature of the advertisement have led to the serious questions about the credibility of its author and the research that underpinned it.
Apparently it was sponsored by Peter O’Neill, or maybe the government, and it certainly seemed to have the intent of diverting people’s attention from the due process of administering justice.
There were, it was claimed, 10,000 people interviewed by Michael Mell and his company Mell Research and Marketing Consultants to glean the opinions on which the research was based.
If true, this is a large number for any research project, itself a matter for interrogation.
Another important question concerns how representative of the population the research sample was, irrespective of its size.
And yet another concerns the impartiality of the questions.
Michael Mell confidently asserted in the advertisement that “Peter O’Neill [was the] best choice for Prime Minister 2012-2022”. Such claims from a supposedly independent opinion pollster leave a lot to be desired.
I would not like to think that Michael Mell was just another puppet dancing to the music of O’Neill in disrespect of his own integrity, intelligence and conscience.
It would also be interesting to know how much Peter O’Neill pulled out of the public purse to solicit Michael Mell into producing this one-sided O’Neill extravaganza.
Using public funds on an ill-conceived and embellished advertisement could set a dangerous precedent.
But here’s my main point.
If Mell, O’Neill and their cohorts are in any doubt, I’d like to inform them that stability in government, public service and armed forces and high standards of social and economic well being for the people is a trademark of – wait for it - zero tolerance of corruption.
This is the pillar of a country’s governmental and bureaucratic stability and advancement. Stability is the end result of zero corruption governance.
If we have a government full of corrupt politicians and bureaucrats, definitely the country is doomed.
I have total confidence in our justice system regardless of how some of our leaders seem to scheme to evade justice.
No one is above the law. O’Neill himself has always preached this and it is true. The writing is on the wall and true justice will prevail.
No amount of research and newspaper advertising will change that.