The KR’s Prerogative of Mercy and Pardon for Papa Arapati, signed and sealed to be a done deal before the eyes of the southern hemisphere focus on the Pacific Islands Forum Leaders meeting, is certainly a historic event.
carried out apparently, unlike the amateur curb painting and
hedge-trimming-butchery at Constitution Park for example, as, once again, like
lazy teenagers expecting Mum’s arrival home after work we clean up the
household messes that we should have done, not out of fear, but out of honour
to our parents for providing us a home.
Our Cook Islands leaders, again, with so-called
VIPs arriving, put on the dog and pony show and doing the chores that they
should have done for us, month after month and year after year but simply have
not, save for the few months before each Parliamentary election.
Could our leaders be any more transparent than
to pull out all the stops to assure the Pacific Islands Forum Leaders have
fresh water aplenty in Aitutaki where the residents there have been neglected
for years? Anyone taking bets on the odds that Aitutaki families will be back
to third-world status soon after the VIPs are fed and washed?
Desperate not to be seen by the world as
backwards natives living in grass huts by showing wisdom and forgiveness to the
family of Papa Arapati, why is it that Parliament has not taken steps to undo
the equal harm to the families of Cook Islanders convicted and imprisoned for
growing and consuming the herb cannabis by resolving that the KR exercise the
Prerogative of Mercy and Pardon?
Has the family of a Police Officer convicted of
possessing herbs years ago faced any less suffering than Papa Arapati’s family?
Will our alcohol-supporting Parliamentarians now announce, during the Forum,
that they will show the same forgiveness?
That would go a long way to giving us the mana
we dream of, long after the hurried curb painting has faded in the sun.