Misapplied Doctrine of Necessity

At the recently held New Democratic Congress (NDC) Convention, some ten members of the party were expelled.

On the “You Decide” program on Channel Six on Wednesday 10th October, Mr. William Joseph sought to invoke the Doctrine of Necessity to justify the expulsion of the members without due process.

This is a misapplication of the doctrine which is justifiable when virtually there are no other options available for addressing a problem.

The standoff between the Prime Minister and his supporters and the so-called “Rebels” was essentially settled by the showing of support for the Prime Minister in Gouyave compared with that for the “Rebels” in St. David.

To all intents and purposes the “Rebels” lost the NDC brand. Their absence at the convention did not help; nor in hindsight could their presence have helped.

With the election of officers clearly aligned to the Prime Minister, there was then a clear option open to the convention to allow for due process.

With disciplinary charges laid, the “Rebels” would have to defend themselves before a Disciplinary Committee cognisant of the will of the members of the party.

The verdict was unlikely to be in their favor.

Further, with some of the “Rebels” considering running for political office in an election that is imminent, contesting the proffered charges might have been considered injudicious.

This approach would have saved the Prime Minister the embarrassment of a charge of trashing the NDC Constitution while preaching integrity, good governance and respect for institutions and the laws.

Curtis Mc Intosh

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