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A ‘Nail In The Coffin’ Budget Says UWP Leader Allen Chastanet

POLITICAL Leader of the United Workers Party (UWP), Allen Chastanet  [Photo: Stan Bishop]
POLITICAL Leader of the United Workers Party (UWP), Allen Chastanet [Photo: Stan Bishop]

POLITICAL Leader of the United Workers Party (UWP), Allen Chastanet, has described Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony’s 2015 Budget Statement as one that creates increased hardships for Saint Lucians.

Speaking to the media outside Parliament on Thursday morning, Chastanet said the government continues to make promises to the people, many of which they are not keeping.

“I think this is a very sad day for Saint Lucia,” Chastanet said. “I think this budget represents another nail in the coffin for Saint Lucians. This is a budget that – like the last three budgets – is full of promises that are going to be very difficult for the government to keep.”

Chastanet said the plight of Saint Lucians was the fundamental priority the government should be zeroing on. The government’s taxation and spending policies, he said, have only served to “reduce Saint Lucians’ standard of living.”

“(This) has caused unemployment to go up and the economy to contract for three consecutive years and has severely damaged the private sector of this country,” Chastanet stated. “You would have thought that in this budget the government would have recognized some of its own shortfalls and would have addressed them. Unfortunately, we’ve seen that they have not addressed any one of these issues.”

Chastanet added that government’s decision to increase the fuel surcharge and vehicle licence fees are detrimental to many Saint Lucians. His party voicing its opposition to the government’s policies in Parliament, he said, is often futile because “they don’t listen to anything.” As such, his party will be organizing a similar protest march as the one they did in January against the government’s fuel adjustment system, Chastanet said.

“I think there are issues in this budget which are equally damaging and will cause our party the same reaction. So we are going to be reorganizing our ‘Orange Campaign’. We think that there are several issues that our members and the people of Saint Lucia are generally offended by in this government,” Chastanet explained.

Chastanet further stated: “We need to stand up. The United Workers Party is ready to work with the people of Saint Lucia in orchestrating that. But we will see protests. We will see many activities to try to get the government to change its positions on these issues.”

In his Budget Statement delivered in Parliament last Tuesday evening, the Prime Minister said he was confident that this year will usher in increased opportunity and growth for the country.

“Barring any unforeseen circumstances,” Dr. Anthony said, “we will see positive gains in our economy. We will maintain a manageable fiscal deficit, far lower than what it was when we took office in 2011. Our public finances will be more secure and our debt more manageable.”

The commissioning of two state-of-the-art hospitals worth over $300 million in the island’s north and south, the delivery of clean drinking water to communities in the south, and a less bureaucratic delivery of public services among others, he said, augur well for economic growth.

Dr. Anthony said priority will be placed on improving the ease of doing business in the courts and at the island’s ports, the creation of a four-lane road link between Castries and Gros Islet, improved broadband network, pursuing renewable energy, and greater support for social programmes such as NICE.

“These are the desires and policies of the government. Our government was elected to deliver a better country and will strive even harder to do just that…We aim to deliver a country more sustainable, more at peace, more productive. A Saint Lucia that nurtures its young, a Saint Lucia that cares for all its people, a Saint Lucia that aspires for greatness,” Dr. Anthony said.

With negative economic growth of -1.9% in 2013 and -0.7 last year, government has come under fire from many for seemingly not doing enough to arrest especially high unemployment levels (around 24%) and cost of living. The 2015/16 budget, estimated at $1.464 billion, the Prime Minister said, should steer the ailing economy in good stead.

Stan Bishop began his career in journalism in March 2008 writing freelance for The VOICE newspaper for six weeks before being hired as a part-time journalist there when one of the company’s journalists was overseas on assignment.

Although he was initially told that the job would last only two weeks, he was able to demonstrate such high quality work that the company offered him a permanent job before that fortnight was over. Read full bio...

3 Comments

  1. Herein are the fine details and manifesto of the coffin Chas is talking about.
    With copious input from party stalwarts Sinator Mary and MP Guy J
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dXg7B97U6NQ

    On the afternoon of Wednesday 31st May a naval engagement took place off the coast of Jutland. The SLP ships on which the brunt of the fighting fell were the Battlecriuser Fleet supported by four fast battleships.’ Admiralty communique of 2nd June 1916

    Captain R. A. Hopwood’s ‘The Old Way’ ( published in 1916)

    ” There’s a sea that lies uncharted far beyond the setting sun,
    And a gallant fleet was sailing there whose fighting days are done,
    Sloop and galleon, brig and pinnace, all the rigs you never met,
    Fighting frigate, grave three-decker with their snowy canvas set;
    Dozed and dreamed, when, on a sudden, ev’ry sail began to swell,
    For the breeze has spoken strangers, with a stirring tale to tell,
    (ELECTION IS NIGH)
    And a thousand eager voices flung the challenge out to sea:
    “Come they hither in the old way, in the only way that’s free?” “

  2. DONT YOU THINK THAT ALLEN CHASTENET IS PLAYING POLITICS AS WELL AS PLAYING WITH THE VULNERABLE, CAN MR CHASTENET DO BETTER, WHAT SOLUTION DOES HE HAVE TO ASSIST THE LUCIAN PEOPLE TO GET BACK TO THE HARD ECONOMIC TIMES IN WHICH HIS GOVERMENT CREATED DURING 2006 THROUGH 2011. HE OF ALL PERSON SHOULD JUST KEEP QUIET, CA– USE WHILES HE WAS SERVING AS MINISTER OF TOURISM, HE MADE LOTS OF BAD DEALS, AS WELL AS HIS PHONE BILLS ALONE WAS OVER $50,000, HE NEEDS TO KEEP QUIET CA– USE HE IS NO EXAMPLE AS A LEADER.

    1. John,

      I confess, “Pray father give me your blessings, for I have sinned.”
      Linus Clovis: when was your last confession? “three weeks ago. Father, I had thought the deafening silence in parliament by the members of the opposition party was as someone described, “they were caught flatfooted” and needed time to respond to the complex arithmetic additions and subtractions contained in the budget. Then Allen said this: “His party voicing its opposition to the government’s policies in Parliament”, he said, is often futile because “they don’t listen to anything.”

      So there’s your answer to the confounding problem that made Moo-Moos out of the blabber mouth Guy Joseph, and Medusa Rigobert with her bogus British accent – Chastanet had told this pack of attack dogs, “SIT, SIT !!” and so they sat quietly.

      Father, I think he gave the command to ATTACK ! FETCH ! last week to his attack dogs and the vociferous barking began, “HOW!! HOW !!

      Gail the Jackass named Alexander: “He Kenny Anthony can only be considered as an enemy of the people of St Lucia.” Seriously father, I knew Allen was an idiot, but I had underestimated his ability to turn Negroes into jackasses, looks like there really is a Stromboli after all who made Jackasses out of liars and not only PINOCCHIO, and so now I believe the Romans killed God on Good Friday and buried him under some big stones in Nicodimus’ tomb.

      .

      .

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnamFerzNvw

      .

      Clovis : Say ten Haily Marys and three Our Fathers.

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