As we move further away from that historic fourth consecutive victory at the polls for the Labour Party on St. Kitts under the leadership of Honorable Denzil Llewellyn Douglas, vivid memories of a conversation I had with the late Honorable Malcolm Earl Guishard surface. He said, “Denzil Douglas is the smartest leader we have in the Caribbean.” If there was any doubt in my mind then, the recent events surrounding the election on January 25th clearly demonstrates that Mr. Guishard knew the gentleman well. Now, here is my question. Is ‘smartness” the criteria for good and decent governance? It baffles me to a certain extent, the numerous messages of congratulation and other high praises heaped upon our Prime Minister from distant fields and even close at home. From what transpired gearing up to the election and thereafter one would have thought the media coverage would have enlightened all as to the events. There were court cases and alleged fraud, questionable immoral ethics and tactics surrounding the historical occasion. Regardless and despite it all, Dr. Denzil Douglas was re-elected to office in a very convincing manner. Congratulating someone on such an outstanding victory is indeed a very noble gesture. There has been a telling response for achieving the historical feat. However, the adage “It’s not whether one wins or loses but how the game is played,” seems no more a motto that we try to live By. It now seems to be “Win at all cost whether you break the rules or not.” The latter seems to be sowing seeds of evil that will yield and manifest one hundredfold. Had all the congratulatory messages come from those who knew how the victory was gained, it begs the question whether those messages confirmed Dr. Douglas’ method of ruling. For example, Prime Minister Roosevelt Skeritt of Dominica was one of the first to congratulate Dr. Douglas on his victory. Mr. Skeritt just about a month prior was also victorious at the polls. The opposition party in Dominica along with other notable individuals attempted to implement and make a big issue regarding the dual citizenship ruling that would have barred those holding that privilege from running for office. Roosevelt Skeritt who holds dual nationality citizenship in no uncertain manner, rubbished that attempt, rejected the whole notion, contested the election and won handsomely. Did he know that Dr. Denzil Douglas not only strengthened that clause to great effect but also added harsh penalties for anyone who even dared to run as a candidate? Did he know that opposition party candidates in St. Kitts and Nevis had to renounce their citizenship to other countries in order to contest our elections? If the truth was known, would some of those congratulatory remarks to PM Douglas come in as they did? Congratulations were received from Presidents of Brazil and Spain among numerous others far and near. Our Caribbean has been harping on democracy but St. Kitts/Nevis By actions of our leaders have ensured we don’t ever forget dictatorship. The island of St. Kitts has certainly blossomed under the leadership of Prime Minister Douglas and no one can deny that. However, our Prime Minister has embarrassed the entire federation with his crass, callous, uncouth and disgraceful public remarks time and time again. His utterances alone are enough for us to reflect seriously if he should have been re-elected to represent us or if he should have been voted out of office. His alleged millions of dollars stacked away is another matter of grave concern. How is it possible for him to have multiple times his entire salaries plus perks for the 15 years while being prime minister? Can this be done legally? The allegation of property he has been able to obtain while in office as prime minister needs to be investigated. Dr. Douglas has made himself a man amongst men as far as selfish gratification is concerned. History will certainly record him as one whose pages are not filled with all roses. His government has been hauled before the courts numerous times during the recent past and has lost those cases. Prime Minister Douglas allegedly brought in thousands of people to vote in the recently concluded federal election. Whether all were legally registered to vote or not is another serious concern. Bringing in jet loads of people to vote is a startling move, especially when the public purse is funding such air lifts. Are those congratulatory messages any indication that those who sent them condone the PM’s actions? If so, we are in terrible shape. Justice is certainly being denied. Are our Caribbean leaders condoning the actual happenings leading up to and on that day? Are they applauding that the voter’s lists were overwhelmingly padded in certain areas? Are they suggesting that the Denzil Douglas-style election that guaranteed him victory with an array of questionable occurrences is the way elections should be carried out in our democratic Caribbean? Finally, the appointment of the lone NRP winning candidate Honorable Patrice Nisbett as Attorney General speaks volumes. He now joins the Labour Party in a coalition attempt to ensure that Labour holds on to a majority in the case of any court case that may unseat a Labour candidate. Attorney General Honorable Patrice Nisbett gleefully accepted the position that has trouble written all over it. History has a strange way of repeating itself and the NRP’s Patrice Nisbett has in fact taken a position that ultimately forced disgrace on former AG Eugene Walwyn who was appointed to the same position in 1966. Will Patrice Nisbett beat the odds? With a cunning and witty Denzil Douglas orchestrating that scenario, all eyes will wait to see. It is a tricky position for the NRP representative. Both he and Premier Parry have all positives in sight for the bright revelation of this appointment. Devolution of power for Nevis seems to be their mantra as they claim he is in the right position to do that in a timely manner for the people of Nevis. We will all wait and see for as the NRP mantra states, Eyes Don’t Lie.
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