In recent days, the Chair of the West Kingston Commission of Enquiry reminded participants that all they need to note was when his right hand moved, and his pen was in action. So far, precious little has made his hand quiver. Poor man, needs a crossword to keep him occupied, but unless he’s ambidextrous, filling in 11-across would signal something important when it was the exact opposite.

So, it was interesting yesterday afternoon, when he pulled out his metaphorical yellow card to warn ACP Leon Rose that his pen was being called into action. “C’mon, ref! I went for the ball,” yelled Leon. No ACP, video replay shows you did not. You had the man in your sights and you tried to take him out. You didn’t make contact, but an attempted strike is still a foul. That was the sense of Sir David’s actions, yesterday.

Leon had been playing a brilliant holding midfield role, blocking and tackling all the diagonal balls that were being sprayed across the field–aka conference room. His head, cleanly shaved, glistened under the floodlights, and could be followed like a beam. In fact, his ability to head away almost every attack was bringing rave reviews from his high command: “Go, Leon! That’s my boy!” He even pulled off his now signature move, that required him throwing himself flat on the deck to avert one such attack. Rumour had it that ACP was being watched by scouts from AC Milan.

The only thing that was looking to be against him was his reluctance to ‘pull the trigger’, as they say in sporting parlance. He himself said, proudly, “I did not pull my weapon”. Now, before some of you turn and wonder if the subject has strayed into an area which Dr. Michael Abrahams touched upon recently (excuse the turn of phrase), our lad, Leon was just making clear that his commanding role did not mean he had to pull on anything but his rank to get things done. His protection and safety was as much in the hands of his fellow officers as was their weapons pointed at men in trees.

But, all this allusion to things floral and fauna, made me lose my track.

Sir David was not happy. Why? Well, our midfield maestro had gone over the top. Lord Gifford, was probing the defence with a short pass, that had a lot of spin, and Leon was looking to just block it and tap it sideways. Then, up came David, looking like Goliath: “You are being evasive, and I have noted it in my book,’ he told Leon, straight into his face. Nose to nose, it was about to get ugly.  

Scenes from tense moments during the West Kingston Commission of Enquiry, as David Simmons (left) warns Leon Rose (right)

You don’t believe me? Listen to the tape, yourself.

Sir David is more wont to make allusions to the game that West Indians like–cricket. So, I think he might have seen it as more ‘sledging’ than a case of ‘handbags’, as it’s known in English football. Given the Caribbean sensitivities about anything that might suggest that a man is not a man, and all of that baggage, let’s leave handbags out of it. But, Leon had been warned , and if he wanted to make something of it, then that could be taken outside.

The game resumed, and ended up as a tame goalless draw. Rookie attacker, Carol DaCosta, came close to scoring a few times with her attempt to suggest the police operations were an “abject failure”, in not arresting Coke, or not apprehending 300 ‘imported’ gunmen (what is our obsession with imports?), and in destroying over 90 houses and damaging numerous other buildings. But, each of these strikes was foiled by the Bar. (Stay with me, now.)

Leon was taken off the field, after these incidents: one more yellow card and he would have to take an early bath, alone. Who’s coming on the field in his place? One of the lower ranks, who knows how to work things on the ground. It looks like the game is still interesting. Take a break, have some tea and a sausage roll, and get back into your seat.

Advertisements