St. Kitts and Nevis’ Prime Minister and National Political Leader of the governing St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP) is lending his voice to growing calls for two former Cabinet and Party colleagues to resign their parliamentary seats won on the Party’s ticket in the 2010 general election.
“It would only be fair and decent for Messrs. (Timothy) Harris and (Sam) Condor to resign from the seats they won as St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party candidates since they are not attempting to bring down the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party Government, and present themselves anew to the voters, in a by-election, as members of whatever party they have now joined,” said Prime Minister Douglas during his weekly radio programme “Ask the Prime Minister” on Tuesday.
He accused the two former colleagues of taking a decision to work with the People’s Action Movement in the hope of causing the Labour Government to fall.
“And I must ask the public here to ignore those persons who try to end this conversation by saying that they are tired of hearing about Labour and PAM,” said Dr. Douglas, pointing out that as evolved human beings “we cannot merely grunt our way through the day. We use words like John and James and Nancy and Frank so the other person will know what we are talking about. This is no different than using the names of political parties. It has nothing to do with tribalism or divisiveness, so I have to stop that diversionary tactic before it even begins.”
Prime Minister Douglas asked the question, why the collaboration with PAM?
“At first, we were told that they did not like or trust me, personally. That, I was too dictatorial. After a while, however, they made it clear that it was not just me whom they disliked. It was, indeed, all of their Cabinet colleagues, whom they repeatedly disparaged as “Yes” men and women, as weak, and as lacking the boldness of character that they supposedly possess. And then, lo and behold, it was made clear that it was not just me, and it was not just their Cabinet colleagues, it was the entire Labour Party because these two gentlemen decided that they absolutely would not come to their Labour Party members to discuss their concerns; they absolutely would not come before their Labour Party members explaining why it would be better if they were to lead the Party; and they made it clear that they absolutely would not come before Labour Party members at our annual conference to express their commitment to our great party, and their readiness to work with Labour Party members to make our Party better,” said the Prime Minister.
He said instead the two decided to join forces with the Peoples Action Movement, hoping that together they might be able to “trigger the downfall of the Labour Government and help parties that are unable to win a national election on their own to get into office, with one of the two gentlemen being named prime minister as a reward.”
“This, quite simply, is the reason for the two gentlemen’s leaving the Labour Party. And this, however, has led to a serious case of theft and betrayal in constituencies 3 and 7,” said Dr. Douglas, who further pointed out that voters in these two constituencies turned out in full force in the 2010 elections after having weighed the past, present, and future prospects of both Labour and PAM, and these voters asked, via their the ballot box, that the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party represent their interests in Parliament.
“I, for example, went to the people of Constituency 6 and told them that I was member of the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party. And I asked that they vote for me, the understanding being that I the Party won, we would, together, be able to continue to important work for which Labour Governments have always been known. Based on my campaigning as a Labour candidate, and comparing relative competence and commitment of our island’s two political parties, the people of #6 voted for Denzil Douglas, the Labour Party candidate,” said Dr. Douglas.
He said the same thing happened in Constituency #1, 2, and 4, where the voters knew that they were free to vote for any party they wished to, but gave Dr. Asim Martin, through their votes, the opportunity to serve. Identical situation with Marcella Liburd of Constituency #2, identical situation with Glenn Phillip in #4.
“In Constituencies 3 and 7 as well, the voters decided in the 2010 election that they, too, preferred to have the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party represent them. Despite this, the persons who were elected in Constituencies 3 and 7 as a result of Labour’s hard work, campaigning, and funding, have for several months now been working with PAM, the Party that the voters rejected, in order to defeat Labour – the party the voters chose. This is a betrayal of the people in Constituencies 3 and 7,” Prime Minister Douglas told listeners.
“Let there be no doubt, however. Whatever the official name of the new party, it is simply PAM by another name. That is why PAM has declared that it will field no candidates against Harris or Condor in the upcoming election. And that is why it has asked the supporters of PAM to vote for these two gentlemen,” said PM Douglas.
“My point this morning is that it is not right for Messrs. Condor and Harris to continue holding on to the seats won as St. Kitts-Nevis Labour candidates in #3 and 7. They should run as members of whatever party they now embrace. And they should let the voters decide exactly which party will represent them in Government,” said Prime Minister Douglas, who urged the Christian Council, the Bar Association, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Hotel and Tourism Association to urge Messrs. Condor and Harris resign and St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party parliamentarians, in order to allow the people of Constituencies 3 and 7 to exercise their democratic right to choose exactly who will represent them.