SOME ARE TRYING TO REPEAT OUR HISTORY. But, there is an old adage that Says, “If you do not know your history you are condemned to repeat it”.
In 1995, the NDC was removed from office by the NNP which promised the world to the electorate. They removed income tax, told people that all their money was theirs and that the country will take care of itself.
A lot of people began to think that the country can run on its own and that they should not pay taxes. The pitch was convincing and many fell for it as things were tight.
Things were tight because Grenada was under a self- inflicted adjustment program to bring the country back into international credibility. Why was this necessary?
This was necessary because the NNP followed an irresponsible management approach where they were spending much more than Grenada was earning. Grenada could not meet its debt obligations and the international financial community deemed us uncreditworthy.
As in many structural adjustment process, people have to sacrifice and things are tight. Many are not willing to do so in the interest of better times in the future as their horizon is short term.
Many persons do not care about the future as they live for today. So KCM exploited the situation. People were not willing to give the NDC a chance as the economy was on the rebound. They jumped ship and were saddled with the NNP.
The NNP was extremely lucky as they got a country that was on its way
upwards in a buoyant world economy. In other words they got the best chance that any politician can hope for. What did they do? They squandered the opportunity.
Immediately they de-emphasized agriculture. KCM said that his father was a farmer and he did not make much progress. He pursued offshore banking, sold passports and gave away Grenada’s marine asset to an international smart man called Grynberg. This was done without any consultation.
Corruption was abound and the government collapsed after three years. Compare this with the NDC’s four-and-a-half years in office. Who achieved more and under what conditions?
With dirty money from the offshore scams the NNP won all the seats after a glitzy campaign. Our country attracted a lot of con-artists and crooks. Our reputation was smeared and we were blacklisted by the international financial
Our then PM Dr. Mitchell landed in the Offshore Alert’s “Hall of Shame”. Imagine he took an eight hour trip to London followed by an hour-and-a-half to Switzerland, then a five hour trip by car to meet a crook to collect money.
Just imagine about fifteen hours without rest. The incentive must have been great! To collect a briefcase of money. Little did he know that he was being filmed. When the story was leaked in the US court he claimed that it was his “Damn money”
How embarrassing for a Caribbean leader! The US confidential leaks on Wikileaks indicate that KCM was seen on tape trying to unsuccessfully stuff all the money in his pocket. That is why he had to take the briefcase.
All the people in the Caribbean were shocked and the leaders were embarrassed. No leader in the Caribbean want to see KCM back in power as he is often referred in derogatory terms.
So what is wrong with some Grenadians? Are we stupid or downright wicked and stupid? How can we subject ourselves to support dishonesty and crookedness? Is it because we are greedy? Is it because we do not adhere to good morals?
Where are our Christian values? Is this how our parents brought us up?
So today we find ourselves in a similar situation to 1995. The NDC again inherited a sick government after the NNP recklessness and corruption. This again led to the lack of creditworthiness.
The NDC again had to take the hard and resolute actions to bring the country back to some financial stability. The difference however is that this time around the NDC had to do so during the worst recession in our lifetime.
Just holding the ship together is an achievement. Just on the cusp of a turnaround some are getting impatient and want to change. Change to what? Recklessness again?
He said that he cannot change. Wickedness and victimisation again! Public servants remember! Those who want him back are those who only benefitted and did not care about other Grenadians. The greedy ones without any shame.
So where do we go? It is time for the rational and reasonable to act. It is time for the silent voter to stake his or her claim on their country. It is time to make sure that we do not go back there.
Our country is now a better place. We are not going back to Mugabe and his tricks and smiles. We need to demonstrate good moral principles and see Grenada in safe hands.