Leader of the Opposition Dr Denzil Douglas has called on citizens and residents of St. Kitts and Nevis to remain focused on holding the Team Unity Government’s feet to the fire.
In a statement Tuesday, he called on the citizenry to continue to highlight the corruption, nepotism and cronyism practised by the government, on the poor performance of the government ministers and the hardship suffered by the people, and on the slipping of the local economy into negative territory.
The former prime minister ripped into the Speaker of the National Assembly, Michael Perkins, for allowing the lawmaking body to be used as a political theatre.
His statement came hours after it was drawn to his attention that at the start of Tuesday’s sitting of the National Assembly, Speaker Perkins read into the records of the Parliament, a letter purportedly written by Eugene Hamilton, Member of Parliament for Constituency #8, raising questions about his qualification as a member of the lawmaking body.
“It is quite unfortunate that the hallowed chamber of Parliament is being used as a political theatre, facilitated by the Speaker, in a useless attempt to rekindle the dying political fortunes of (Prime Minister) Dr. Timothy Harris and some of his cohorts,” said Dr. Douglas, who is overseas and could not attend the hastily-called meeting of the National Assembly.
“I reiterate the point that the Parliament is being used as a political theatre because Dr. Timothy Harris, Mr. Eugene Hamilton, Speaker Michael Perkins and all members of Parliament are well aware that under our Constitution, the Parliament of our land in and of itself cannot address matters to do with the qualification of members to sit in the Assembly. This is a matter which only the Courts of our land can determine. For Speaker Michael Perkins to read Mr. Eugene Hamilton’s ill-conceived letter into the records of Parliament is irresponsible and reinforces the public’s views of the Speaker a bias arbitre of the Parliament’s business,” said Dr. Douglas, the Parliamentary Representative for St. Christopher 6 since 1989.
Dr. Douglas, who served as Prime Minister for 20 years noted that Hamilton’s letter “is nothing more than a political gimmick that he is performing under instructions from his failing leader Dr. Timothy Harris”.
“Secondly, Prime Minister Harris, as a consequence of his ever dwindling political support among the electorate of St. Kitts and Nevis, has sought to engage in political distraction. Recent polls (September 2017) conducted in St. Kitts reveal ever-growing disenchantment with Prime Minister Harris. Sixty-five per cent (65%) of the residents and citizens are dissatisfied with the leadership of our country and only 29% are satisfied with the failed leadership of Dr. Harris. On the other hand, 63% of the populace favour my leadership. These are the facts and figures that have incensed Dr. Harris – his failed leadership and his desire to resurrect his ill-fated political career,” Dr. Douglas said.
He added that it is clear that the citizenry of “our beloved country is ready for a different kind of leadership – a leadership that cares about all of our people and not just the Prime Minister’s family and his close friends; a leadership that understands the workings of our economy and how to put people to work; a leadership that understands how to grow the economy and create prosperity for the widest cross-section of the population”.
He disclosed that the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party will shortly unveil the team that is seeking to lead the affairs of the nation after the next general elections.
In calling for the support on their behalf, the former prime minister appealed to the Nation not to be distracted by the political shenanigans used by Dr. Harris.
“His day is coming and coming sooner that he thinks. And when that day comes, St. Kitts and Nevis will again be Number One,” he said.