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Lead this country... God forbid not Johnny Mentira Print E-mail
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Written by Administrator   
Thursday, 25 August 2011 00:00

“All of the great leaders have had one characteristic in common: the willingness to confront unequivocally the major anxiety of their people in their time. This, and not much else, is the essence of leadership.”


The personal paths to leadership are seldom a function of deliberate use of interventions, planning, motivational practices, power use, or other established leadership techniques. Successful leadership is often also viewed as a deliberate act of influence. This is not necessarily the case. When we talk to leaders and they reflect back on their careers, they often find that their paths to leadership were the results of several incremental incidents where they earned their right to lead. It seems there are defining moments in leaders’ careers where strong bonds are created. Belize is presently confronted with a situation where loud noises from Market Square, the stool pigeons, and others willing to nibble from Lord Ashcroft’s crumbs are willing to compromise that all important character medallion-INTEGRITY. 

The Prime Minister continues the fight for the cause of the Belizean people by protecting us in many ways, but none so daunting than the 9th Constitutional Amendment.  The Churches were opposed and discussions ensued that alleviated those fears. The opposition party opposed, but like the Republicans in the USA, they will always oppose. Shallow and almost intellectually empty, Mr. Leader of the Opposition in response to the Council of Churches press release said “there are two issues that I would like to bring apart from the meat that we want to talk about….”. Mr. Leader of the Opposition, everything else you said later was bare bones, barren of even an ounce of flesh, so it must be asked “where is the intellectual beef that many of us waited for”.

It seems that whenever the Leader of the Opposition is asked fundamental questions that requires deep thinking, analysis and intellect, he blames everyone else. The excuse was that he was not consulted and therefore would like to see a redraft. Isn’t it true that the Prime Minister indicated to the Churches that those changes will be presented to the National Assembly? But then you don’t really attend meetings, but posture as someone who convinces only himself that he can lead this country.

Mr. Leader of the Opposition, there are many flaws of leadership and though you possess many, there are three that are paramount and applicable to you: The first is, you hesitate to take definitive action. According to you, when asked about your party’s plans, you are constantly preparing, which means your party wasn’t ready from 1998-2008 and will not be ready in 2013. Seems your troops need a little more training. In your procrastination, you have refused to engage the number one enemy of the state. You just couldn’t bring yourself to launch an attack, but preferred to walk out of the National Assembly. Your days as leader of your own party are numbered and when relieved of your duty, even your failed army will abandon you.

Mr. Leader complains of a lack of resources or is that you complain that you have so many resources that when combined still adds to zero? It is quite possible that your resources look at you and wonder where the ‘heavy political artillery’ will come from, because it’s not within you and unfortunately cannot be purchased for you. The truth is that, as a leader, you never have enough resources. You can always use more of one thing or another. Successful leaders figure out how to get the job done with the resources they have.

Take a page from the Prime Minister’s book, your government left the United Democratic Party with the superbond and though you tried to explain away the effects of credit ratings, Belize has not defaulted. And please, Mr. Leader of the Opposition, do your research because there are Standard &Poor’s (S&P), Moody’s, Fitch Ratings and many others, but these are the primary ones. The country’s credit rating of B- does not mean that we have defaulted, or are near default. Did you know that there are countries who pay to get AAA ratings or some of the higher ratings and did you know that S&P is being investigated. You mentioned foreign direct investment (FDI), but am sure you know that potential investors must always do their own due diligence when they seek to invest rather than a total reliance on credit rating agencies (CRAs).
Mr. Leader of the Opposition you also refuse to take responsibility and constantly blame everyone else for your mistakes or refusal to act. You blame the Prime Minister every time you are faced with a question of consequence. You have become quite the master finger-pointer. Leaders don’t do that and are accountable for the results and accept full responsibility for the outcomes.

Defining moments in a country’s transition are characterized by unconscious processing that guide people’s moment-to-moment thoughts, emotions, and behaviours. People experience frustrating thoughts and emotions, but when experiencing such thoughts and emotions, a country’s people want to believe that someone, somewhere, will be willing to take responsibility. People want role models displaying strengths, providing hope, and showing progress. They want leadership. In everyday conversation, people often speak casually of character as something that a person has or does not have.

Courage is the emotional strength that involves exercise of will to accomplish goals in the face of opposition, and is defined by the character strengths of bravery, persistence, integrity, and vitality. Leaders earn their right to lead and display bravery in defining moments. They do not shrink from threats, challenges, or difficulties. They speak up for what they think is right even if there is opposition from followers, peers, or others. They show persistence, finish what they have started, and complete challenging expectations. The one accepted as a leader in defining moments must also display integrity. They speak the truth and take responsibility for their feelings and actions. Mr. Leader of the Opposition, you do not possess the minimum prerequisites to lead the country of Belize.