THE least talked about political party in the country, the Lucian Peoples Movement (LPM), seems to have found a way to establish itself as a household name in the country and to offset the balance of political power in the House of Assembly.
Therold Prudent, the party’s political leader, believes that the formula is all in the grassroots connection his party has managed to make over the past year.
“We do not have to be loud to be strong. We do not have to make a big song. The LPM understands it will not win a general election, after all we cannot do things on the scale as that of the Saint Lucia Labour Party and the United Workers Party. However we have found a way to be effective, which is working on the ground,” Prudent told The VOICE.
Prudent says that his party will be fielding five or six candidates in the upcoming general elections, with the objective of pulling votes from both the SLP and the UWP.
However, he is adamant that his party, will have at least one seat in parliament after the election
“We will win in Gros Islet. The people of Gros Islet are with us. We are doing a lot of things in Gros Islet. Gros Islet is a must win seat for us,” Prudent said.
Over the past year and into this year his party has operated several community programmes for children and youths in the constituency.
His office, which is in the heart of the town, is a buzz of activity on account of the heavy human traffic that flows through its doors.
He believes that this time around the LPM will change the political trajectory of the country forever, a change, he says, that the country is crying out for, and has been in need of for many, many years.
“All we have to do is just win a seat and that we will do,” Prudent said.
The candidates the party will be fielding in the general elections are for strategic purposes, not that it believes it stands a chance of winning in those constituencies.
Said Prudent: “In those areas (constituencies) we are going to make a significant mark. These are areas we can compete with the other political parties.”
The areas he’s talking about are primarily Dennery, Anse la Raye and Canaries.
“We are working on candidates for those areas. In fact tomorrow afternoon at 4:00 p.m. we will be having a meeting in Dennery and on Saturday another in Anse la Raye. We are going for a balance of power,” Prudent said.
He described the responses from those areas to his party’s canvassing as encouraging. The idea is to siphon votes off the main parties.
The LPM has a hands off attitude regarding constituencies like Micoud North and Micoud South, Laborie and others where either the SLP or the UWP have a stronghold. As far as Prudent is concerned it would be a waste of the very limited resources the LPM has to make a bid for those constituencies. The best move, he notes, is to work on the ground in constituencies where the LPM can shift the balance of political power.
With Gros Islet already in the bag for the LPM, according to Prudent, the next constituency that the LPM is looking to do well in is Anse la Raye/Canaries.
“We are going for balance of power,” Prudent said.