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SLP Accuses Gov’t Of Being Anti-St. Lucian

Image: Parliamentary Representative for Laborie, Alva Baptiste

ONE member of the St. Lucia Labour Party (SLP) has accused the government of being on a mission to destroy all things St. Lucian with their series of worrisome implementations.

The accusation was made by Parliamentary Representative for Laborie, Alva Baptiste, during his speech delivery at last week’s budget debate on the Estimates of Expenditure in the House of Assembly.

Image of Parliamentary Representative for Laborie, Alva Baptiste [PHOTO: Stan Bishop]
Parliamentary Representative for Laborie, Alva Baptiste [PHOTO: Stan Bishop]
In a bold statement, Baptise said: “Everything with the name ‘St. Lucia’ is being attacked and demolished.”

He continued: “The St. Lucia Tourist Board, St. Lucia Marketing Board, St. Lucia Fish Marketing Board, Radio St. Lucia, St. Lucia National Trust, St. Lucia Jazz, St. Lucia Postal Services. I will not be surprised, Madame Speaker, if the Salvation Army is next on the list, by saying that it’s a threat to national security, because it has the name “Army” in it.”

Baptiste’s statement stirred up mixed reaction from parliamentarians, as members of the government began to laugh, saying that the St. Lucia Labour Party is next, prompting members of the opposition, namely Opposition Leader Philip J. Pierre to say: “That will never happen. That’s what you want, but the party will never let that happen!”

Baptiste said the government has no respect for St. Lucia’s symbols of excellence.

He said: “Honourable Derek Walcott, one of our Nobel Prize Winners, a man who has taken St. Lucia internationally…A project in his honour, you have destroyed it. You removed $700,000 as a subvention because you’re so upset that the National Trust is doing its work very well.”

Earlier on in his speech, Baptise said the government had done nothing but ruined the lives of thousands of people in St. Lucia.

That statement, too, stirred up a roar of laughter from the government’s side of the room.

Baptiste said that the discontinuation of the NICE and STEP initiatives, government robbed people of the opportunity of making a living.

Baptiste said government partakes in actions that do not serve in the best interest of the people and that the SLP will not sit idly and allow such actions to continue.

With that said, Baptiste stated: “We are not going to sit idly by and allow the government to use the machinery of government as an apparatus of force and aggression against people (who are) at variance with the posture you assume. We cannot run a country like that.”

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2 Comments

  1. One can only presume that Mr. Baptiste was, unfortunately, suffering some type of medical set-back (or maybe worringly low blood sugar level or skipping a meal or personal life stresses unduly influencing what’s said?) based on the directionless comments that he made which had no particular value to the democratic discourse that we expect of our elected officials and, frankly, that wasted time of both parties in what should be considered limited and value time for all-party discussion on matters of compelling national significance.

    He was quoted as saying “…use the machinery of government as an apparatus of force and aggression against people…”.

    It is very disappointing that a publicly elected official would use the term “machinery of government” so recklessly and so ignorantly. Perhaps he might benefit from taking a proverbial ‘Machinery of Government 101’ course such that he truly understands what the term actually means with respect to its breadth, depth, potential and scope in the system of our parliamentary government system.

    One may not always agree with Mr. Pierre’s political views. However, with respect to helping preserve the decorum deserving of such a richly heritaged and distinguished legislative assembly, he must be accorded the credit he truly deserves.

    Bravo to Mr. Pierre for addressing in a face-on manner Mr. Baptiste’s bombastic chatter, which was truly, and sadly, a stunningly public sign of disrespect and disregard for his party, to Mr. Pierre and to the civilized engagement and exchange of ideas worthy of such a chamber.

    Again, one hopes that Mr. Baptiste is able to move beyond his seeming medical set-back that might have influenced what he was blurting out on that particular day.

    God Bless.

  2. Mr. Baptiste has once again eloquently articulated the shameless duplicity of this present administration. He has raised his voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. He asserted without equivocation that the ‘machinery of government should not be used as an apparatus of force and aggression against people.’ On the contrary, he has affirmed the rights of the marginalized with his great oratory skills.

    Moreover, he is clear-eyed and can see through the facade of deceptions and is quick to identify the deceptive propaganda being spewed by the administration . His defiant tone was emblematic of his pugnacious approach to politics. Most of us are silent cowards who perform the obligatory ritual of hypocrisy but in Mr. Baptiste we witnessed a man who is willing to challenge the authoritarian tendencies of this government. Let us not forget that in a democracy the people must hold the government accountable for its actions. Well done Mr. Baptiste!

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