Thursday, 17 July 2014

A Process of Continual Improvement


St Helena Island ‘Falsely Portrayed’

St Helena’s Executive Council – comprising Councillors Ian Rummery, Wilson Duncan, Christine Scipio-O’Dean, Lawson Henry and Brian Isaac – have reacted strongly to a story about St Helena in today’s Daily Mail regarding child protection and sexual offences. Council believes that the article paints a totally untrue picture of the Island, much of it based on hearsay.

Executive Council said:

“Today’s Daily Mail portrays a false and totally unbalanced image of St Helena, and has angered St Helenians, both on-Island and overseas. Those who live on St Helena recognise that there are issues around child protection and sexual crime, but also know that they live in a remarkably peaceful and safe community, a fact invariably noted by visitors to the Island.

“St Helena has the same issues as any other jurisdiction and has made strong progress over the past few years in dealing with and prosecuting sex offenders and improving child protection.

“The two reports cited by the Daily Mail in fact demonstrate a process of continual improvement. We investigate all sexual allegations and anyone found guilty faces the full force of the law. Numerous prosecutions of sex offenders over the past few years demonstrate this.

“The Council has every confidence in the Police force on the Island, which benefits from excellent leadership. We resent the insinuation in the newspaper that somehow the Police do not take sex offences seriously. Quite the opposite is the truth.

“Executive Councillors recognise the commitment of Legislative Council, St Helena Police, Social Services, the Governor, the FCO and all others involved, in taking child protection and sexual crime very seriously. All of us are working hard to improve safeguarding on St Helena, and are very disappointed in the obvious bias in today’s newspaper story. 

“And there has been no attempt to somehow cover up the findings of these reports. Their findings have been well publicised on the Island and Councillors have held public and media debates on these issues. To suggest that there is a reluctance to engage in issues around child safeguarding, somehow linked to a wish not to damage tourism, is absurd.

“Councillors and Government here welcome any objective and independent review of our current arrangements. Recommendations in both the reports cited have been implemented and are now well embedded on the Island. There is always more to do and we are not complacent, but the fact remains that child safeguarding provisions on St Helena are stronger now than they have ever been. The way cases are assembled, supervised and prosecuted has been reformed, as have training and professional standards. In addition, our various agencies here are now working closely together to review historic cases. It is a shame that this excellent work went unrecognised in the Daily Mail.”

Councillor and Children’s Champion Christine Scipio-O’Dean concluded:

“We are all alarmed by the inflammatory and biased reporting in the article published today. We have taken great steps on St Helena to protect our children and vulnerable people against abuse of any kind. We know that there are concerns, as there are in any community, but solid progress has been made in improving our safeguarding capabilities. We know there is still more to do, and we will continue to strive for further improvements.”

The St Helena portrayed in the Mail's farrago of unattributed material is utterly unrecognisable to anyone with any knowledge of the real place.

I am not saying that child abuse, sexual exploitation and domestic violence do not exist there. They exist everywhere.

But the only person to say anything openly in this report says that they were less common there than in Britain, and specifically than in the leafy South of England. Anyone who knows St Helena knows that he is right.

Several "quotations" to the contrary have obviously been made up, and let us not forget with which newspaper we are dealing here.

The Mail clearly has some Taxpayers' Alliance-type campaign against the airport, and it is following the logic of that position by opposing the defence of the Falkland Islands.

Plus, of course, there is the need to distract from the Thatcher Government, relatives of the members of which, as such, are now deemed unfit to investigate these matters.

If this report were even vaguely true, then the entire population of St Helena would have to be in some way complicit, just as the entire population of Ireland would have to be if such reports were true, and just as the entire population of Britain would have to be if such reports were true.

If there were that much of it about, then it would be normal behaviour. But there is not. It is not. It is deviant behaviour produced by deviant ideology and deviant institutions. In Britain. In Ireland. And, on the tiny scale that it exists at all there, in St Helena.


  1. Continual improvement, and it was much better than over here to start with. The Police Chief from Sussex who had been Police Chief on the Island said so.

    1. Quite.

      And he was the only other person whom the Mail quoted by name. The rest, it has just made up. Does it think that we cannot tell?

  2. The Mail claims to have got it from some charity but does not quote anybody from that charity by name or explain how the paper obtained the thing. This is all rubbish, you are right they don't like the spending on the airport and haven't worked out the Falklands connection. This is so far removed from St. Helena you would laugh if it didn't make you want to cry. Think of it this way, the community there should be looking at a huge payout from the Mail.

    1. Oh, it is all absolute nonsense, of course it is. You would think that a London paper would have closer to home to look.

      Especially since the English former Chief of Police has told it that things are much worse over here than anything with which he ever had to deal in St Helena.

      The Mail is hoping that its readers will miss the Falklands connection, but will itself be quite aware of it. All spending, even that, is "waste", you see.

      We'll see what the Mail thinks is "waste" when it pays out for all manner of new amenities on St Helena.

      But it has used this distraction technique before, pretending only just to have discovered the Paedophile Information Exchange from 30 and 40 years ago in order to sit on the absolutely current story of Patrick Rock.

      Now, it has to distract from the exposure of the Thatcher Government. But it won't.

  3. It's the Mail. Of course it's lies.

  4. "Teenage girls are traded for food", I ask you! Because there is such a food shortage on St. Helena, the biggest eating place on earth!

    They'll be saying the Saints cook missionaries in giant pots next, I bet they have visions of grass skirts and bones through the noses.

    The stuff about the American airbase on Ascension might be true but that strengthens the case of the Islanders you expressed on RT those months ago. Ascension is not St. Helena and that is the problem with it.

    An American airbase whoring is a problem with an American airbase and would be the same wherever it was in the world.

    Keep fighting.

    1. Traded for food, is that they are saying now? That is particularly hilarious to anyone who knows what St Helena's decidedly food-rich (and rich food) culture is really like, I have to say.

      Yes, Ascension is a whole other story. The problem there, if there is one, would not be with anything St Helenian, but with everything else.

  5. Apart from that boy in the xx you are the only person from St. Helena anybody in the UK media has ever heard of so its good to see you on the case. Only a shame you are not still at the Telegraph where you could have killed off this story yesterday and we could all have moved on.

    1. Jonathan Longwood17 July 2014 at 23:11

      If David had the political and media profile he deserves, the Mail would never have dared run it, never mind needed to be rebutted out of the park by him.

  6. Jonathan Longwood17 July 2014 at 23:00

    This is just how brown people behave in Dacreworld. I bet anything the Mail think the Saints are Muslims, too. The Mail's coverage is so racist you would think it was satire if it wasn't the Mail.

    Puberty, not the age of consent, is when people become sexually available? They must have accidentally put that in when it was intended for an article about Eton. Ssshh, naughty naughty, mustn't say that.

  7. Nothing in any of the Sunday papers, nothing on the BBC, this "story" is dead. Well done, Mr. Lindsay. You are a very great man.