My colleagues and I often care for patients suffering from hallucinations, prophesying, and claiming to speak with God, among other symptoms—in mental health care, it’s sometimes very difficult to tell apart religious belief from mental illness…. Our conclusions frequently stem from the behaviors we see before us. Take an example of a man who walks into an emergency department, mumbling incoherently. He says he’s hearing voices in his head, but insists there’s nothing wrong with him. He hasn’t used any drugs or alcohol. If he were to be evaluated by mental health professionals, there’s a good chance he might be diagnosed with a psychotic disorder like schizophrenia. But what if that same man were deeply religious? What if his incomprehensible language was speaking in tongues?
Having the auditor-general qualify audits due to poor accounting practice or a lack of attention to detail is always cause for concern but, if the political will exists, such things can at least be rectified by introducing new systems or through improved personnel management. The real problems come when governance is so poor that there is simply nothing to audit — where records are not kept, minutes of meetings and decisions are never made, employees are not qualified to do their jobs, and it is not clear who is responsible for anything. Such an environment of zero accountability is ripe for corruption and this is precisely the outcome that has resulted. It is no exaggeration to say that there are entire towns, and critical state departments, that are now in the hands of organised crime syndicates masquerading as public servants. Their sole aim is to loot, and creating a climate of general administrative chaos is an excellent smokescreen. – am Editorial in Business DayBACK TO TOP