So parliament is now at work

Lloyd NoelWe have been getting bits and pieces of news – concerning the newly Elected Government of Dr. Mitchell and his New National Party (NNP) – and after One month and eight days since after the clean sweep victory of the Nineteenth February Parliament is due to be opened on the 27th March.

All the Senators have been selected, and by the 26th March they should all have been sworn in by the Governor-General, to take their seats in the new Parliament.

Up to the weekend – the names of the Three Senators who would normally be appointed by the opposition, and now the Governor General would exercise his discretion after consulting whoever, these have not been disclosed.

But the grapevine news have revealed, that two ex-Senators of the last NDC Government and one ex-M.P Minister thereof have been selected to fill the positions.

With the Three Senators representing the Farmers, the Business Organisations and the Trade Unions already in place – the Upper House would be very well balanced to display its proper role in the business of Government, on matters concerning the rights and interests of the people.

So that while in the lower House of Parliament, it will always be a straight case of “All in favour of whatever is proposed” – it is to be hoped that the views and sentiments coming from the Senators who are not obligated to the controllers of power – those will be listened to and fully considered on merits.

After all is said and done, as far as our Economy as a whole and our debt burdens in particular are concerned – no one in the majority in Parliament can honestly profess, that the alarming and burdensome conditions only came about while the NDC Government was in control.

It is therefore a worthwhile arrangement, to have at least three of those who struggled with the problems over the last four and a half years, in the seats of power to share their views and make their contributions about solutions.

The upcoming months of this year especially, will bring about some testing times for those in control of the nation’s affairs. And these will be particularly oppressive, because the prevailing conditions will not depend solely on the actions taken by the controllers.

I have heard the news about the Road projects and the Kuwaiti funds that were made available towards the last stage of the current controllers months in office before 2008, and the problems with the then CCC Contractors who were not allowed to continue the project by the NDC.

It seems that the problems have been resolved, and the projects will be coming back on stream in the very near future – and that must be very good news for those workers who depend on such employment, and who have been struggling for some considerable time now.

So the recent winners have begun to perform well in the first hundred days – and that must be very good news for the public relations.

On the other side of the coin that has to do with outstanding debts owing by Government – and many dating back to the times before 2008 when the current controllers were in power – the funds are apparently not available to meet the required payments up front, and the payments of public workers or Civil Servants could be facing some problems in the coming months.

I suppose it is against that background the new controllers have been talking about sending home some Government workers, or retrenchment of some staff in Departments where there seems to be what is considered surplus workers.

The method of reducing the Government monthly wages Bill, is problematic at the best of times – but should it be perceived that those being sent home, or threatened, are workers who had been wearing yellow jerseys, rather than green, during the recent campaign rallies for the nineteenth February Elections – then the exercise could create a whole lot of unwanted problems.

The powers-that-be should reconsider that option, and be very careful how they approach the whole issue of sending home some workers, on the pretext of reducing the Government wages Bill.

The unemployment situation is already very critical, and causing serious problems for hundreds of Families Island wide. The solution, therefore, must be very serious efforts to try and reduce the numbers of unemployeds, rather than adding to the numbers.

And as for sending home the yellow-jersey wearers, and replacing them with Green Jersey supporters from the campaign days – that mode of revengeful behaviour should not even be thought about, never mind implemented.

The Government currently in power, and headed by Dr. Keith Mitchell as the Prime Minister – is the Government of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique, and all the people who reside in the Tri-Island State – and not just the NNP voters.

We have had more than enough of that petty-political-melee of the nineteen fifties, Sixties and Seventies; and also of the Revolutionary dictatorship of 1979-1983, and the pains and horrors and sorrows those periods brought on our people.

It is far more than enough time, for our leaders to move with and into the modern era of democratic statesmanship, and behave and perform in like manner – befitting of our Independent status.

As a practicing Christian nation state, we must not be seen again as a divided group of constantly squabbling political misfits, looking for nothing more than mere power to be in control and in charge.

And now that the current controllers have set this most enviable record of winning ALL the seats on two occasions – it is most fitting and proper that they should also set the highest standards, of treating all the people with equal fairness and appreciation at all times, in the discharge of their duty as leaders.

There is quite a lot to be done in many areas – to bring the business operations of the people back on stream in the coming months, and it would make the task of so doing much easier if the political climate is kept at a level that is devoid of animosity, and the need for rancor and further division.


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