Being honest with the nation

Two major mistruths of the government have been discovered in the past one week and both of them portray the government in poor light.

The first was the claim that the government had achieved or partly achieved most of its pledges.

However, a closer look by the paper showed that, on the contrary, only two pledges were actually achieved.

The desperation of the government was apparent in it claiming achievements that were either not achieved or not even of its own.

The damage would not have been as much if the issue was left at the PM’s statement that did not really delve into if each claim was achieved or not, but left it to the people to judge.

However, a subsequent written press release enumerating which pledges were achieved or partly achieved raised more questions with several dubious claims.

It is natural for any government to want to put its best foot forward, but in doing so, there must be some basis in fact.

The government in pulling of its 25 days pledges stunt will have hurt its credibility with both the press and the public.

The second big untruth was the government’s original claim that it was only taking Nu 45 bn in grant and another Nu 5 bn in extra grants and payments coming to a total of Nu 50 bn from India.

There was this whole talk of Bhutan reducing its grant dependency and heading to self-sufficiency.

It now emerges that this government will be asking India for another 10 bn for its super specialty hospital pledge. This pushes the total grant from India to Nu 60 bn, well exceeding the total 50 bn grant of the 11th plan.

Both of the above problems stem from the same source- with the government’s many and populist pledges.

A way out is to be honest to the nation early on and say what is possible or not and then continue from there, but the government is not willing to do this.

Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.
Thomas Jefferson

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