Media Matters 2.0

I have come to the conclusion that the New Democratic Party “NDP”, is an NGO (Non-Governmental Organisation). The hiring of some 24 Lawyers to monitor a General Election tells me that you have no faith in our Democracy, but, more so that you are not an “Opposition Party” seeking to govern our Country. Most importantly, the monitoring of any “General Election” in a Democracy must be done not by any “Political Party” who are running in the Election. Also, there must exist strong evidence that such a monitoring is indeed necessary.

For example, the case in Burundi; The UN had to employ an Electoral Observation Mission in Burundi (MENUB) for the polls amidst July election that won Mr. Nkurunziza a controversial third term ensued by the Burundi President rigging the game, in which he change the Constitution to remove the “Term Limits”. The Opposition and civil society stated that this move was in violation of the constitution, and the Arusha peace agreement that ended the country’s deadly civil war just over 10 years ago. Also, Mr Nkurunziza (Burundi President) was seeking an “illegal third term”.

Thus, there must exist empirical evidence of some sort for reasons why the NDP think’s it necessary to hire 24 Lawyers to monitor our “General Elections”. Furthermore, the monitoring of any general elections in a democracy must be done by an “independent observer”. Often times, the task is rest upon the shoulders of the UN or even civil societies.

Throughout this entire campaign, the NDP have left us with more questions…view on [NDP Manifesto] and they’ve adopted the characteristics of an NGO (Non-Governmental Organization), rather than an Opposition Party seeking Government. It is time to hold the NDP Opposition Leader “Accountable” for his many “non-responsiveness”, some of the NDP Political Candidates for their vile statements towards Women and desperate attempts to inject “Racism” into our “political culture”. Also, for the spreading of “Falsehoods” and the publication of  a “Contradictory and Unworkable” Manifesto that left the People of St Vincent and the Grenadines with more questions instead of solutions.

The language of the NDP manifesto is not only “contradictory and unworkable”, but, also lacks “Transparency”….view on [Anonymous International Investors].

Moreover, “Good Governance” not only means people in political office must be held “accountable”, but, also civil societies, private sectors and we the people must all account for our actions. The NDP supporters must be held be accountable for their disruptive behaviour on July.20.2014 (E.G Lynch Funeral) and for the total disregard in respect to “the rule of Law” (violation of our Christian Tradition). We must all uphold the “Rule of Law”.

Also, the NDP Leader and his associates must be held “accountable” for the email sent to the relevant Human Rights body by Mr. Ramos, in regards to his erroneous claims about the ULP Government grave violation of Human Rights. On this matter, there have been little to no “response” from the NDP camp. However, Article (13) of the ICESCR (1966) which speaks of the right to Education has been fully respected via the ULP Government passing of the Education Revolution Act of 2005. Thus, making education at all levels not only “universal”, but, making it both “Equal and Equitable”. In other words, persons no longer just have “equal” access to Education, but, equitable access (they can afford to go to school). Moreover, it was just last year the NDP had a rally in Kingstown in which the ULP Government did not in any way circumscribe any of the NDP members fundamental Human Rights (article 20 of the UDHR, 1948).

I know the “naysayers” and the “Negative Ad Peddlers” are going to say that I am not applying “Critical Thinking” or that I am kissing up to the Hon. Dr. Ralph Gonsalves. However, if you’ve noticed, I present my FACTS and urge people to engage me in an erudite discussion on policies and issues, but, instead they resort to “personal attacks, name callings” and spreading falsehoods.

But, yet I am the one that is not employing “Critical Thinking”. Because I support the #ULP Government I am not “Thinking Critically”. I am not challenging conventional wisdom because I refuse to be trapped in “Traditional Political Imprisonment” – I support Herman Belmer to be the next Representative for the Northern Grenadines. Because I have witness first-hand the benefits of the “Education Revolution”, the fact that the Argyle International Airport will attract more Trade and Investments to our country – I am not “thinking critically”. Moreover, indigent poor under the NDP Government sat at 25.7%, but, at present it sits at 2.9% under the ULP Government. No! Emmanuel Quashie you are not being “Objective”………

14 National Scholarships, College Students with B+ and above continues to receive $500, YES Program continues and many more.

In 2013, the ULP Government responded with a “Housing Revolution” initiative that saw so many persons receive Houses that they’ve lost ensued by the December 2013 flooding and have since broaden the initiative to include members of society who are at a disadvantage either economically, physically and mentally.

On that note; we’ve seen a society that is more inclusive and a government whose policies promotes “Equity and Inclusiveness”. President Barack Obama said at the recent Panama Summit (2015) in addressing “Civil Societies” that; “We know that economies attract more Trade and Investments when citizens are free to start a new business without paying a bribe”. We’ve noticed this under the ULP Government lead by Dr. Ralph Gonsalves. For instance, “St Vincent and the Grenadines FDI (Foreign Direct investment) sat at $34 million USD in 2002, but, FDI sits at $115.4 Million USD as of 2012” (CARICOM; FDI 2002 -2013 Report, 2014).

St Vincent and the Grenadines as a SIDS (Small Island Developing States), comes with a range of “Vulnerabilities”. Our small size makes it difficult for us to have a “wider tax space” and consumer base, thus, we will need to depend on external markets envisage substantial economic growth. The Argyle International Airport is a vital infrastructure that will see increase in areas of Trade, Investments and Tourism. Moreover, we’ve seen Min. Foreign Affairs et al Camillo MIchael Gonsalves embarked on a mission that will see Vincentians with less travel restrictions (Visa Free to 26 Countries in the Schengen Zone).

Also, our vulnerabilities are exacerbated by “exogenous shocks” such as; “Financial shocks” and the 2008 Global Financial crisis negatively impacted countries economy around the globe. However, Small Island Developing States were amongst the economies that suffered the most from the global financial crisis. For instance, in countries like St Lucia and the Bahamas saw approximately 1000 in job cuts and Barbados cut over 3000 jobs. Meanwhile, there were no job cuts in St Vincent and the Grenadines, neither a decrease in spending on public assistance geared at helping the “most vulnerable” of the population to get that chance at a better life.

To add insult to injury, SIDS geographical location makes them vulnerable to “climate shocks” amid they are at the forefront of global warming. For instance, St Vincent and the Grenadines in the last 4 years had the following; a drought causing 11% damage to GDP (mainly to agriculture), Hurricane Tomas 13% damage to GDP, December 2013 Flood resulted in 10% damage to GDP and most recent flood estimated at 17% damage to GDP. Thus, such major hits to GDP ensued by “climate shocks” are not trivial concerns, but, the NDP has no “Climate Change” agenda. On the other hand, under the ULP Government, St Vincent and the Grenadines have adopted numerous Climate Change initiatives such as; a $10 million investment plan under the Pilot Program for Climate Resilience. In the Northern Grenadines, the installation of a seawater reverse osmosis plant in 2010 envisaged providing potable water to the residents of Bequia in times of “drought”.

 

The ULP Team is endowed with a Visionary Leader (International Airport, Education Revolution, etc.) and also Pragmatic Leaders (EU removed us from their Black List, Schengen Visa Free, etc.). Sometimes politics can seem very small, but, the choice you make on December 9th, it couldn’t be bigger.

#ULP2015 #4InaRow                                                                                                                          – Emmanuel Quashie

“Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm. Being a Leader is not about being perfect. It’s about weathering the storm and carrying on”

The Hon. Dr. Ralph Gonsalves have steered St Vincent and the Grenadines in the right direction through the storm the 2008 Global Financial Crisis and post- Global Financial Crisis, for we’ve noticed many economies were still hurting and are still feeling the impacts of the 2008 global financial crisis.

Every Prime Minister inherits challenges, but, few have face so many. We’ve noticed, few years later after the Global Financial Crisis, Salary increases for Public Servants, More persons attending University abroad (especially those of the Indigent poor), Indigent poor decreased to 2.9%,  14 National Scholarships, College Students with B+ and above continues to receive $500, YES Program continues and many more.

Comparatively, St Vincent and the Grenadines debt to GDP sits at 67%, GDP per capita increased from $3,076.29 USD in 1999 to $10,000 USD in 2014, coupled with an average economic growth of approximately 2%. On the other hand, Jamaica Debt to GDP sits at approximately 132%, GDP per capita sits at $8,600 and economic growth at 0.5%. Not to mention, over 1000 individuals lost their job in St Lucia, Bahamas and over 3000 in Barbados.

Min. of Foreign Affairs et al Camillo MIchael Gonsalves led the fight to the United Nations General Assembly, in his capacity as St Vincent and the Grenadines Permanent Representative to the United Nations to bring attention to the impact of the Global Financial Crisis impact on Small Island Developing States (SIDS). At the time, when Great Powers were creating their “country clubs” to deal with the Global Financial Crisis amidst little attention was paid to how it impacted Small Island Developing States.

The #ULP Team is endowed with a Visionary Leader (International Airport, Education Revolution, etc.) and Pragmatic Leaders (EU removed us from their Black List, Schengen Visa Free, etc.).

People of St Vincent and the Grenadines you will have a choice to make in another few weeks or so, between two completely different parties. One with “No Vision” the “NO Damn Plan” (party) according to my Comrade and Friend Trish (Jett Mummy) – abbreviated as #NDP. While on the other hand, you have the Unity Labour Party abbreviated as #ULP, a Party with a Vision and a Pragmatic Leader. Moving Forward with the Unity Labour Party #4InARow.

MY ULP STORY:

As a young man growing up I have always had a passion in education and solely believe that it is the most important tool for personal growth and the advancement of any nation state, especially developing states. However, coming from a life of destitution, being born to a mentally mother, absent a father and growing up in a group home for Homeless and incorrigible boys, impacted my chance of advancing earlier in my life. In my earlier stages of my life, I resided at Liberty Lodge Boys’ Training Centre. After Liberty Lodge, I would find myself moving from house to house just to rest my head, sometimes shower and even to acquire a proper meal.

Despite my disadvantages, I remained resilient, positive and kept focus on my goal to obtain a higher education envisage becoming a contributing human being to society. Thus, I was able to access funding through the “Disadvantage Student Loan” created out of the Education Revolution. As a result, I was able to access Higher Education, upon which I attended the University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica. On October, 29 (2015), I graduated with “First Class Honours” in the area of International Relations. Today, I am currently pursuing an MSc in Government, specializing in International Relations at the University of the West Indies, Mona. In addition, I tutor level’s 1, 2 & 3 courses (in the areas of International Relations) at the Undergraduate in Department of Government.

Also, I am a recipient of a Graduate Assistance, which covers my tuition fee for the Master’s Program and I have be given a Grant from the Government of St Vincent and the Grenadines valued in the amount of $25,000 which covers my Hall of Residence including other living expenses, to assist with my studies.

Digression; I derived my strength from my Mother and the people who have showed me their unwavering support throughout my life. My role models are Prime Minister Dr. ralph Gonsalves, President Barack Obama and Min. Camillo Gonsalves.

– Emmanuel Quashie