The countdown to the “silly season” is fast upon us and Politicians are beginning to lose all sense of fair play and reasoning.
It was most disgusting to hear the unsophisticated lies and untruths coming from the mouths of some of those in the ranks of the Opposition at last Sunday’s public meeting of the New National Party (NNP) at Tanteen, St. George’s.
THE NEW TODAY newspaper was looking at former Prime Minister, Dr. Keith Mitchell to rein in the likes of St. Mark’s Member of Parliament, Clarice Modeste-Curwen and former Finance Minister, Anthony Boatswain, the former MP for St. Patrick West.
After all, it is Dr. Mitchell who has been preaching the politics of “reconciliation and for unity throughout the length and breath of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique”.
The assault on the General Manager at the Grenada Airports Authority (GAA) in terms of his salary was quite unnecessary by the St. Mark Parliamentarian.
The goodly gentleman is not paid by the taxpayers of the country as a public officer but was hired by a statutory body.
And the salary being paid to the manager at the airport is on par with what the same NNP government was paying to one Richardson Andrew, the Personal Advisor to then Prime Minister Mitchell.
It is either Dr. Curwen-Modeste did not know about the huge salary of $27, 000.00 a month plus perks that Mr. Andrew received each month or is downright dishonest and engaged in mere politicking.
The infamous Jamaican Attorney-at-law, and Special Prosecutor for the NNP government, Hugh Wildman was given a special contract to do his work at over EC$19, 000.00 a month plus several perks.
The NNP salary madness degenerated in the case of former Commissioner of Police, Fitzroy Bedeau who was forced out from his job by the same Prime Minister Mitchell for poor performance during the passage of Hurricane Ivan in September 2004.
The rejected Bedeau got a promotion soon afterwards as an Advisor in the Office of the Prime Minister and handed a contract in which his salary moved up to $US 5000.00 a month, the equivalent of EC$13, 584.50.
This newspaper is not aware of anyone working in the Office of Prime Minister Tillman Thomas who is getting as much as EC$10, 000.00 per month in basic salary in the form of a government contract.
In recent years, Mr. Boatswain has degenerated into a level that no one could have ever envisaged.
The former Finance Minister under NNP was a one-time close political associate of the late George Ignatius Brizan even when the same Boatswain was a public officer.
It was Brizan who was instrumental in getting the high-paying job for Boatswain as Macro-Economic Planner in the Ministry of Finance and when the contract ended the European Union told government that the contract will not be renewed on account of non-performance.
Brizan again showed his loyalty to Boatswain as a friend and paved the way for him to get another nice-paying job as General Manager of the state-run Grenada Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC).
Does Mr. Boatswain believe in his own lie that Grenada was declared uncreditworthy in 1992 when the NDC government of Sir Nicholas Brathwaite was in power?
This newspaper will not allow Mr. Boatswain to continue distorting history and to mislead a generation of unsuspecting young primary school children and students at the secondary school level, as well as those attending TAMCC who might fall for his misinformation.
Mr. Boatswain is fully aware that in its report of January 3, 1994, the IMF wrote the following about Grenada: “After deteriorating marketedly in 1986-1990 Grenada’s public finances improved in 1991-1993 mainly in reflection in the turn around in the Central Government’s performances. The public sector’s overall balance shifted from a deficit equivalent to 9 percent of G.G.P. in 1990 to a surplus of about 3 1/2 percent in 1993 – a 139 1/2%…”.
Mr. Boatswain knows who were the persons running the country between 1986 and March 13, 1990 – primarily H.A. Blaize, Ben Jones and Dr. Keith Mitchell when Grenada was declared as uncreditworthy by the major world financial institutions.
If Dr. Mitchell sits on the same platform with MP Modeste-Curwen and Mr. Boatswain and allow then to continue along that path it will therefore mean that the former Prime Minister has not changed and is engaged in his usual politics of mamagism.
Former Foreign Affairs Minister, Dr. Raphael Fletcher had told the nation once that Dr. Mitchell himself is a stranger to truth and will continue to peddle his own little lies to promote himself.
A classic from Dr. Fletcher is a speech that was delivered by ex-Prime Minister Mitchell at a Heads of Government summit when he made the boast that he was the first Prime Minister in the English-speaking Caribbean to visit Cuba after the tragic events in Grenada in 1983.
In the words of Dr. Fletcher, the then sitting Prime Minister of Dominica, Eddison James touched Dr. Mitchell and sought to correct him by indicating that he (Mr. James) was the first to do so but that did not deter the former Grenada Prime Minister from continuing to peddle the misinformation.
According to Dr. Fletcher, it did not take Dr. Mitchell any length of time to keep repeating the blatant lie that he was the first Caribbean Prime Minister to visit Cuba and meet with President Castro in the aftermath of the U.S-led military action to end Grenada’s flirtation with Communism/Marxism.
A really changed Dr. Mitchell will give a stern warning to MP Curwen-Modeste and Mr. Boatswain to change course in keeping with his theme song of “National Unity” and an end to the politics of spite, division and hate.