THIS week marks one year since the general elections of 2016 that catapulted the ruling United Workers Party into power. One year later, amidst the rallies and celebrations which threaten to assume their own predictable significance, we should take stock of our overall progress.
Not from a partisan position where the opposition SLP begrudges the fact that the UWP is still in power, has not yet imploded, and somehow manages to hold on to the reins of power. Neither from the UWP’s vantage point, where promises being delivered, plans for development, and projects to be implemented, are heralded.
Away from those charged positions lies another more objective and less glamorous perspective. What does the everyday person think, especially if they remove their coloured lenses? How do we discover this? Some honesty, candid conversations, and objectivity.
On a national scale, you might think that we need a powerful computer with a sizeable spreadsheet with columns titled ‘losses’ and ‘gains’ to keep track of our overall progress, with the many initiatives and interventions already announced.
Further detailed analysis may be undertaken after the budget debate closes, but for now, let’s consider a few points:
(+) We are a proud and mostly peaceful people;
(+) We have greatness within our midst and our reach;
(-) We still allow ourselves to be divided;
(-) We cannot yet agree on a national plan or path.
Without an agreed national plan, then any plan whatsoever, however scattershot, might just be a good plan or a disaster. Till then, any election result — and resulting plan of action — has the capacity to swing us in an unanticipated and questionable direction. The good intentions of any administration will have an associated risk.
Here’s a closing thought to be picked up later. Our politicians delight in visiting the Diaspora to meet our fellow countrymen and women and to get the usual photo-opportunities. What insurmountable challenges prevent an ‘overseas vote’ from being tallied from these citizens to appoint a Diaspora Representative? With our new cluster-based Ministries, that could be a way to strengthen representation.
To share your views, contact the author at: www.datashore.net or via The VOICE.
About the Author
Dr. Lyndell St. Ville is an ICT Consultant based in Saint Lucia. His expertise includes: systems analysis, design, and security strengthening.