An Appeal to Justice Michael Zothankhuma
By Sobu Khezhie
Sir, with due respect, I would like to share with you a conversation between me and my sister that happened a few days ago. She has recently sat for her mains exam for Nagaland Civil Services. She texted me one day feeling really dejected. She told me that after church service that day, a guy came up to her and advised her to approach people in higher power for “help” in getting through the exams. She was taken aback even more so because he happened to be the son of someone who professes their faith actively and that he got his job through “help” which he is actually proud of. My sister told him that she wants to compete in a fair manner and only succeed through hardwork and dedication, to which he replied that it is not a new thing to ask for “help” and that almost everybody is doing it and there is nothing to feel shy about.
She told me that she has never been more disheartened and low. You see sir, I have always tried to imbibe the values of morality, integrity, ethics among my siblings and myself. I have always tried to hold on to my principles even though I have failed many times. And I tell them that one should not compromise with these else, at the end of the day your success is just someone else’s pity.
Now sir, what would you do if your daughter or son were in my sister’s place…? How would you encourage them…? Do you tell them to stand for the truth and justice no matter what people say or do you ask them to bend their morals and go with the flow…? Do you tell them that it doesn’t matter what others are doing and that what really matters is what they do or do you tell them that since people are doing it, they should too…? Do you tell them that they have nothing to fear or hide or do you tell them that they should hide the things they do lest they be left behind….?
That day, I felt as if I have let my sister down…I know I have said the right things to her but at what cost… I have seen how both my sisters put in so much effort to study late into the nights just so that they can compete with their peers. But you see the situation sir, at the end of the day, the one who seeks “help” is the one who gets it. And this is what we call as a Backdoor Appointment.
As your name is, you are a man of justice, which is synonymous with fairness, equity, integrity, honesty and being reasonable. Even me, as a layman, I cannot comprehend as to how people justify manipulation as being fair….? How people justify the denial of opportunity to thousands of aspirants for a fair competition as being reasonable…? How people justify getting a job through backdoor appointment as a blessing…?
Justice ensures that people receives their fair share, receives fair treatment, that people’s actions conform to rules of fair play and that any injustices done are adequately addressed.
Today, I appeal to you sir, to look at the situation not strictly from a legal point of view which, unfortunately has been manipulated to such an extent that right has become wrong and wrong is the new in, but to look at it from our view, the thousands of unemployed aspirants struggling to get a job, us fighting for the chance to compete in a fair manner so that meritocracy prevails, us fighting against nepotism, favouritism, prejudice, backdoor appointments and corruption.
As you prepare to give your observation on backdoor appointments today, please remember our plight sir. Remember that all we ask from you is to give us what we deserve… a chance to prove ourselves in the society, a chance to compete for our stand, a chance to bring change in our society and a chance for justice to be delivered…
”Justice consists not in being neutral between right and wrong, but in finding out the right and upholding it, wherever found, against the wrong.”