Letters & Opinion

Waiting for empty promises to fill!

Image of Carlton Ishmael
By Carlton Ishmael

IT amazes me how the Government views development, especially in this silly season. The common need of most nationals is to find the money to sustain their livelihood.

When the current government was in opposition, they condemned and criticized the then Government of the Labour Party and made several promises to improve living conditions and give us a better future. No doubt, people bought into their suggestion and their ideas and thought their condemnations were justifiable. In addition, they made several promises that found favour with the voters, such as the reduction, and eventually altogether, the Elimination of VAT. We were told that the cost of petroleum products were too high and they would ensure the cost of fuel was lowered.

We were also made other vital promises, such as dealing with the crime scourge and development of the tourism sector to create several more jobs. If my memory serves me right there was also talk of employment in health care and the advent of new hospitals, new Sea and Air ports, also, new reliable energy sources. We were also promised better governance and a better way of life.

These policies and forward-thinking development concepts filled the ears of most of the people and they then gave the then Government of the day the boot, in preference to the new regime with its promises of building a new St Lucia. We are now at the end of this first cycle and it’s time to take stock and assess if all these promises were fulfilled, or if most of the proposed development goals have come to pass.

The answer is really your own opinion, as I cannot determine if you have enjoyed a better life, or profited or benefitted from all those promises. Again I hear of more plans, and new promises and so much more money that will be pumped into the economy that it is hard to believe that anything is wrong or can get worse, as money is coming in by jet loads.

Mind you, I hear a lot more excuses why this or that has not been done, I hear of all the stumbling blocks and impediments that caused delays, and the incompletion of several programs, projects and promises.

Chief among them is the Covid pandemic, because you seldom hear it was because of lack of money, because we have also had opportunity to borrow great sums of money, plus the many grants in between, as well as revenue derived from taxes licensing and land deals. We frequently hear about lock-boxes and capital gained from the Citizen by Investment programs and established policies — and yet with all these sources and means to obtain, the general public still seems dissatisfied.

I sometimes think that politicians take us for fools, seeing us as people with little understanding and very gullible, with too much party loyalty to see the flaws in the system.

Both sides of the divide are muddy, good and bad coming from both parties, but one thing for sure: Those in the inner circle right now, have surely benefited greatly – and now they have to pay back their pound of flesh and fight to keep what they don’t want to lose.

More and more support comes from all corners, some are very pleased with the term of office of this Government and are looking forward towards their continued control, but equally there are also those who are dissatisfied and hope that there is an end to their reign.

The bottom line is: the future of either party lies in the vote of the people and they, and only they can support continuity or divorce this regime.

I sit back and wait to see the outcome and sentiments of the people and how they are thinking. I want to see what road we take — after all, we have plenty of roads, plenty of driving to do, miles and miles of it — and hopefully enough money to fill-up our tanks, considering we built them without loans and the cash was stashed in the kitty.

In the meantime and in between time, we are still waiting for the many empty promises to be filled and fulfilled.

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