THE next general elections are already shaping up to be a cutthroat event. Political aspirants and incumbents alike are already seizing the opportunity to outwit, outshine and ouster anyone who gets in their way to those comfortable seats in the House of Assembly.
Take the latest debacle concerning United Workers Party (UWP) Political Leader, Allen Chastanet, for example, whose university credentials are now being called into question by his political opponents. The situation has resulted in Chastanet inviting the media to the UWP headquarters yesterday to capture images of said certificates.
Also, take the case of the Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP) being accused of “buttering up” former UWP Political Leader and Prime Minister Stephenson King in the House of Assembly for which he would allegedly get a top diplomatic post should the SLP win the next polls.
The current political environment is ripe with rumours, prompting many people to believe that there is a serious agenda in place to take people’s minds off the realities of the day. Day in, day out, we are bombarded by frivolous banter that not only serve to erase whatever little pride we have left but also question our aptitude for advancement.
With successive negative economic growth postings annually, Saint Lucia being described as a destination for prostitution and human trafficking and criminals holding us to ransom, one would expect that politicians on all sides would cough up some semblance of bipartisanship in order to address these ills. However, what we are cursed with are politicians taking cheap shots at each other in the hope that such actions provide comic relief.
Despite the impending dark days staring us in the face, we still have a government boasting its achievements thus far and a few opposition parties claiming to do better should they get into the driver’s seat. In many cases, the fresh ideas being touted by opposition parties are the ones the party now in government wishes it could implement if only they had a few more dollars lying around.
For a country whose human resource far exceeds its natural resources capacity, one would think that a sensible charter for this country would have been written up by now. But with the National Vision Commission almost halfway through its two-year mandate, one can only hope that whatever ideas do come out in the process actually takes us forward, if only we have the fortitude to implement them.
With general elections constitutionally due in less than two years’ time, politicians should all do us a favour by striving to look inwardly before even offering up their names for elective office. We already have too many square pegs sitting at that round table in Parliament earning salaries that do not justify their service to this country.
It’s time for politicians to bring about change by first changing themselves. It’s about time they also leave the trivialities behind. People need real change and only serious politicians need apply.