Annou Pale

Annou Pale – The State Of Politics In St. Lucia

THE VOICE introduces a brand new column ANNOU PALE aimed at stimulating dialogue on some of the most pressing problems facing our country at this time.

We plan that this conversation will continue for some time throwing up ideas and solutions to the problems that have been identified and selected for discussion. You, the reader, have the opportunity to join the debate which in fact, has already started.

There seems to be growing concern among St Lucians about the level of politics practised on the island. Already this has produced a state of voter apathy that is unprecedented in St Lucia with a less than 60 percent turnout at the polls in the last two general elections in 2006 and 2011. In recent years we have heard increasing statements by people of voting age that they will not exercise their franchise in the elections of 2016. Many are simply fed up with politics and the fact that it has not been able to produce the required results either for the people or for the country, in terms of bettering individual and national expectations.

Why is there such a resentment among the population to the quality of our politics? When did this trend really begin and what is the reason for it? Surely the quality of politics is dependent on the quality of persons we elect to office. Is there anything that can be done at this stage to entice people back to the polling booths? Let’s face it, bad officials are elected by good citizens who do not vote. An American clergyman Howard Crosby once said that to let politics become a cesspool, and then avoid it because it is a cesspool; is a double crime. It means that we, the people, have the responsibility for righting our own wrongs.

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So where do we go in St Lucia? With another general election fast approaching, should we not assume this responsibility and pressure political parties into presenting us with candidates who will uplift public discourse and so raise the standard of politics. But considering the fact that political parties seem to care so little what the public thinks about such issues, is there another way to bring them to heel?
A New View from our last Tuesday’s comments

Is Politics a corrupt thing or noble thing? That’s my question. Politics is just a necessary aspect of civilization. When a community becomes developed, opinions naturally is formed about how things should be run. So I suppose yes, politics is NOBLE, to help advance humanity and learn from mistakes.

It also causes a lot of conflict, and sometimes people let it become too personal so it gets in the way of things like friendship; and sometimes people do things underhandedly, but politics remains very necessary for society, even if it is unpleasant to deal with sometimes. Generally I think it’s important to have a little knowledge and somewhat of an opinion on different governments to really live your life culturally and actively.

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