By Rupert M.C.D. Byron, M.B.A. In his speech in the occasion of the celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the Independence of the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis, the Premier of Nevis, Hon. Joseph Parry said that the Nevis Reformation Party which now forms the Nevis Island Government has not changed their party’s philosophy, but rather they have changed their party’s emphasis. That being the case, this “change of emphasis”, has resulted in a radical change of their party’s plan of action from secession to constitutional reform, and from independence to devolution of power.” This “change of emphasis” is unconstitutional,” and has had disastrous” consequences for the national rights of the island of Nevis which are stated in Clause #113 of the Constitution of St Kitts and Nevis.” The Nevis Reformation Party’s decision to unconstitutionally deny the people of Nevis our inalienable right to self determination was announced in its Throne Speech 3th October, 2006. In this speech the Deputy Governor said, “My government does not support the idea of breaking up the Federation, considering our social historical, and economic ties.” What we will be seeking from constitutional reform is a greater devolution of power to the N.J.A. to control and manage its own affairs and the economic development of Nevis, bearing in mind our unique circumstances.” We would like to play a more active role in foreign affairs, and we wild prefer the institutionalization of a joint cabinet to deal with matters of common interest.” This decision by the Nevis Reformation Party to abandon the constitutional right of the people of” Nevis to seek secession and independence is a betrayal of the promise which it made to the people of Nevis in the manifesto which enabled it win two seats in” the state’s general election in 1975.” Their manifesto said, “The Nevis Reformation Party will strive at all costs to gain secession for Nevis from St. Kitts, a privilege enjoyed by the people of Nevis before 1882.” I will now quote some views of Nevisians who still support this promise which was the mandate” from the electorate of Nevis” to the founders of the Nevis Reformation party” that forms the basis of Clause # 113 in the Constitution of St. Kitts and Nevis. October 24, 2003: The Cry” by Ira Hanley “The cry for independence is nothing new. I personally can recall that in the late “50s as a teenager we marched with banners in Charlestown with the cry for independence.” In 2003 the cry for independence still rings loud and clear.” The movement has survived because there has always been a cultural nationalism in Nevis which has demonstrated the desire for the formation of an independent Nevis.” November 21, 2003: “Everson W. Hull, Ph.D. Econ. “Today as Nevisians reaffirm their sacred right to govern themselves, the federal government has again stepped up its talk about constitutional reform. The Nevis government (that was the Concerned Citizens Movement Administration) has preserved its vision for a fully independent Nevis.” They have reserved the services of experts who have outlined in considerable detail the itemized costs and benefits of a newly independent Nevis.” February 13, 2004: Everton Swagga Powell. “Stand firm Nevisians.” Our will for self-determination is no different to that of Nauru or a CARICOM country like Jamaica and St. Kitts. Why shouldn’t Nevis experience that right?” Yet the opposition Nevis Reformation Party is campaigning to deny Nevis this right.” Must we continue to let St. Kitts siphon off between $11 million annually according to NRP estimates or $17 million annually according to CDB estimates?” Have no fear Nevisians, If Nauru can stand tall as an 8 square mile independent country for 36 years, so can Nevis. February 27, 2004—Clinton Swanston “Will Nevis forever be doomed?” Or will we stand together as proud Nevisians and decide to be an independent people?” As Nevisians we alone have the right to decide our future and our destiny.” February 20., 2004—Lawyer Jerry Webb spins his web on Secession. The aim of this letter is to point out that firstly the Nevis quest for independence as a sovereign nation, separate and apart from St. Kitts, in not constitutionally predicated upon the existence of any constitutional or other grievance or upon there being any bad relations between the politicians of both islands.” The fact of the matter is that unlike Barbuda or Tobago. The 1983 constitution has produced for and in Nevis most of the concomitant institutions of a fully fledge democratic country.” That type of maturity has always been the criterion which Britain employed in granting independence to its former colonies.” If this point is accepted then Nevis is already and fully matured to take the next logical step in the fulfillment of its destiny which is Secession” End quote When the current Nevis Reformation Party abandoned its mandate to strive at all costs for the secession of Nevis for the emphasis on an unconstitutional devolution of power by the federal government in St. Kitts,” But the people of Nevis must not abdicate our inalienable constitution right to the full independence of Nevis which has been written into the constitution of St. Kitts and Nevis by the founders of the Nevis Reformation Party.
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