The three sitting Members of Parliament of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in St. Andrew’s have given their commitment to remain as Government Ministers in the minority Government of Prime Minister, Tillman Thomas.
All three, Alleyne Walker, Patrick Simmons and Sylvester Quarless gave the assurances of not relinquishing their ministerial portfolios during a public meeting last Sunday in Telescope in St. Andrew’s.
Walker who is considered as a senior statesman in the party told a public meeting held by Congress to bring an end to its annual convention of delegates that he was asked by someone last week if he was next in line to resign from the government.
He revealed that in St. Andrew’s North West where he is the Parliamentary Representative, he does not take decisions by himself.
He spoke of the members of the Constituency Branch being the ones to give him directions when it comes to making political decisions.
Member of Parliament for the south St. George constituency, former Foreign Trade and The Environment Minister, Glynis Roberts resigned about two weeks ago to become the latest person to quit her government post.
According to Walker who entered frontline politics back in 1984, it is rather unfortunate that everyone does not have the same foresight.
In his address to party supporters, Simmons who is believed to be a close ally of the Prime Minister said, “for those of you who have been doubting my commitment to the process, I say to you there is no need or reason to be afraid.”
Simmons who holds the portfolio of Youth Empowerment and Sports Minister told the rally, “the new innings” is about to start, and irrespective of the part he has to play, he is prepared “to play.”
“That is my commitment to you, the supporters of the National Democratic Congress, and in particular, the supporters and the voting public of St. Andrew’s South East,” he said.
The St. Andrew’s South East MP spoke of being confident that at the next election campaign, the entire team of candidates would bind together as one team with one Captain, ready to play in whatsoever position they are placed to play.
Quarless who is the Member of Parliament for St. Andrew’s South West said people are speculating about his continued involvement with the Congress government.
He said: “Some people are asking… if I’m there, if I leave, if I’m going and resign. I hear people say so much things about me that I don’t even know about myself. I promise you that as we prepare for this leg that I will be standing behind the NDC and the Political Leader”.
Quarless reminded the rally that the NDC won the constituency for the first time in the 2008 poll, and that he is hopeful that it would remain with the ruling party.
However, he told his constituents that in order for that to be done they have to get registered to vote in the upcoming general election.
He disclosed that as of December 2011, there were only 587 registered voters on the electoral list. This is believed to be way below the amount of registered voters for the 2008 poll.
The NDC which won 11 of the Parliamentary Seats at the July 2008 National Polls has been dogged by a number of resignations in recent months following internal bickering.
Three Senior Government Ministers, Peter David, Karl Hood, and Glynis Roberts resigned while Prime Minister Thomas fired Joseph Gilbert earlier this year after he wrote a Gaming Company in the United States promising a casino license without the knowledge of the Cabinet.
The other minister to quit was Michael Church (Foreign Trade & Energy) who declined to accept a demotion to a post of Minister of State after he was caught misleading the Prime Minister on an overseas trip.
Church, the Member of Parliament for St. John received permission to leave the State to visit a sick family member in Atlanta in the United States but instead flew to Geneva, Switzerland in the company of a close associate of the former government to attend a conference.