Is Acting Commissioner of Police Winston James a politically inclined person?

THE NEW TODAY is asking the question in light of statements allegedly made by the island’s top cop last week Wednesday at a meeting held between newly re-elected Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell and members of the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF).

It should be recalled that Mr. James was lured out of retirement by Prime Minister Mitchell after the 2013 elections to take charge of the force once again after a perceived problem developed with the then office holder, Willan Thompson.

The perception had been around for sometime that Mr. James might have been a supporter of the Mitchell-led NNP but no one had any concrete proof of this at all.

However, some felt that James’ address last week in the presence of PM Mitchell was concrete evidence that he was pro-NNP and was being backed up by statements made in the past by Dr. Mitchell that he likes loyalty from persons more than one’s ability to perform on the job.

In addition, any casual observer who heard the unfortunate utterances from the man at the helm of the force could logically reach the conclusion that Mr. James was very insensitive in the address as head of a body that should be independent and non-partisan.

It is clear that the COP was showing political favouritism when he used words to the effect in the presence of PM Mitchell that, “no weapons formed against you can prosper” and “who God bless no man curse”.

This is heavy partisan political stuff in front of a force in which some members would be supporters of the ruling New National Party (NNP), others might prefer the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) and yet others might have no preference for either of the two major parties.

The Acting COP was also insensitive when in the presence of the Prime Minister he singled out for praise two members of the High Command – Deputy Commissioner Edvin Martin and Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Jessmon Prince for their performance on the job.

The other deputy Commissioner of Police, Franklyn Redhead was present at the meeting and might have taken note of what was happening around him.

Was Mr. James giving some kind of a hint to the Prime Minister that he should look in the direction of the two mentioned senior officers as his likely successors as head of RGPF? What about Redhead? How did he feel when James was praising two others and not him?

It should also be noted that while James was speaking, Dr. Mitchell, might have already identified his man for the COP job based on the well-established philosophy of the Grenadian leader that loyalty is the main thing to him and not performance.

The Acting Commissioner might have already compromised himself by the speech and is no longer in a position to take any form of disciplinary action against those police officers who came out publicly during the campaign to show their loyalty to NNP and not the force.

The world was exposed to the posting of Police Officer Vicroy Richardson who was seen during the campaign dressed in the full NNP gears and said openly on Social Media: “…Am moving on with the New National Party” and also Woman Police Constable Victoria Simon from the sister isle of Carriacou.

Are we seeing a different set off rules being applied to the supporters of the so-called “Green Machine” in the police force and another set of standards for the rest of the men and women in uniform?

The last Commissioner of Police who degraded the position was Fitzroy Bedeau who often told persons that he was the 16th member of the NNP Cabinet of Ministers.

The sad truth is that RGPF is not an independent and non-partisan establishment.

Many of the junior officers often complain of being overlooked for promotion while those who are less qualified but known to be supporters of NNP are given preference.

Is it any wonder that some police officers took Mr. James to court to seek justice on the issue of promotion?

THE NEW TODAY will be looking forward to the signal coming from the force in this current period in light of Grenada’s unofficial designation of now being a “one-party state” given the results of the last two general election.

The proponents of “Project Grenada” are now seeing their hopes and dreams being materialised but should be very mindful of history.

It took March 13, 1979 to end the Eric Gairy era and four-and-a-half years later when Grenadians were in despair and kept praying, the instrument that was used to end the dark period was Bernard Coard who made a grab for power with his pro-Moscow and anti-Cuba faction within the New Jewel Movement (NJM).

The “Project Grenada” outfit should remember the words of PM Mitchell after Hurricane Ivan destroyed a great portion of the island in September 2004 and calls were made for national unity between NNP and NDC.

How many of us remember the words – two male crabs can’t live in the same hole?

History has a funny way sometimes of repeating itself.

Two remanded on Non-Capital Murder charge

Two young men from the small village of Beaton in St. David are facing a joint charge of Non-Capital Murder in connection with the March 24 death of 61-year old Francis Williams of the same village.

Auto Body Repairman Davis Gulston and 25-year-old Construction Worker, Johnny Perryman, face a maximum sentence of life imprisonment if convicted of murder

37-year-old Auto Body Repairman Davis Gulston, and Johnny Perryman, a 25-year-old Construction Worker, appeared last week Wednesday before Magistrate Tahira Gellineau at the St. George’s No. 2 Magistrate’s Court on the charge, which carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.

Although, they were not represented by counsel, both murder accused persons indicated to the court that they have retained the services of Attorney-at-Law Derick Sylvester to assist them.

THE NEW TODAY understands that 61-year-old Francis, died just around 8 o’clock on the Saturday night of the incident in which he succumbed to stab wounds that were reportedly inflicted by the men, during a physical altercation at a village shop.

Information reaching THE NEW TODAY indicates that the senior citizen along with three other men were having a drink at a village shop when another individual, whose name was withheld, showed up.

However, the man’s presence was not welcomed and he was asked to leave the compound but he did not comply.

This resulted in an altercation with one of the men who was drinking inside the shop.

Francis reportedly left the scene and returned moments later with a cutlass and reportedly made a strike with the instrument at the individual.

The cutlass is said to have struck another man who was trying to put peace.

THE NEW TODAY understands that the man who was struck with the cutlass got upset and attacked Williams and the two were soon after engaged in a scuffle.

Information revealed that they separated and after a few minutes of fighting, Francis stood up and fell back down.

According to police reports, Francis received 2 stab wounds; one to his face and another to his chest and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Francis’ death brought the homicide toll to 3, since the start of 2018.

Both murder-accused were expected to reappear before the Magistrate Gellineau today (April 6).

Pure Grenada Welcomes World Arc Rally 2018

Pure Grenada, the Spice of the Caribbean was delighted to welcome the final 14 yachts in the World ARC Atlantic Rally for Cruisers Round the World race 2017-2018.

GTA CEO Patricia Maher (left) standing with Eileen and Ken Swan of S/Y Aurora, first prize winners of World Arc 2018

World ARC is a round-the-world adventure taking place over 15 months and covering 26,000 nautical miles. The event features a mix of cruising and exploring the world.

Forty-five participants in this year’s event represented several countries including the US, UK, Italy, Netherlands, Germany, Latvia and Sweden.

The Grenada Tourism Authority worked closely with Camper & Nicholson Port Louis Marina, Westerhall Estate Ltd., Digicel, the Marine and Yachting Association of Grenada (MAYAG) and other private & public sector partners to host and provide a memorable experience for visiting families and crew members ending their 15-month journey.

MAYAG hosted a welcome reception at the Grenada Yacht Club on March 16 and the Awards Dinner was celebrated at Port Louis Marina on March 20.

All the winning teams spoke glowingly about Grenada, impressed by the destination’s beauty, safety and the friendliness of the people.

While on island they enjoyed island tours visiting historic forts, beaches, the Grand Etang Rain Forest, rum distilleries & chocolate factories.

GTA’s Manager of Nautical Development, Nikoyan Roberts was enthusiastic about World ARC 2018 and stated, “Great teamwork with the organisers from World Cruising Club made it a pleasure to host this global yachting event in Grenada.

“We look forward to hosting next year’s World ARC with an estimated 26 yachts carded to arrive in 2019”, she remarked.

Co-op Bank opens new “Excellence Centre” banking facility

Grenada Co-operative Bank Limited officially opened the doors of its new premises for the Spiceland Mall Retail Banking Unit, located at the recently added wing of the Spiceland Mall.

Co-op Bank employees at the newly opened Spiceland Mall Retail Banking Unit

The Banking facility, dubbed the “Excellence Centre” was established to provide enhanced customer experiences and modern comfort and conveniences for its Retail, Corporate and Commercial customers.

The opening ceremony was held on March 22 at the new location in the presence of one hundred (100) guests including Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell, Linda Felix-Berkeley, Resident Representative of the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB), and Venerable Michael Marshall of the Anglican Diocese.

Also, in attendance were members of the Board of Directors, Executive Management and several long-standing customers of the Bank.

In his keynote address, Chairman of the Bank’s Board of Directors, Ambrose Phillip, declared that “The founding fathers had a vision for the bank – a vision that in my view, we have lived up to quite admirably to date.

“Our leadership in customer convenience is undoubted with the largest ATM network on the island; and the second largest footprint in terms of branches; and a cutting edge easy-to-use e-banking platform”, he said.

“This facility is yet another component of the meticulous construction of our customer-centric orientation, which in turn is the cornerstone of our strategic thrust”, he added.

In his remarks, Co-op Bank’s Managing Director, Richard Duncan said: “We seriously regard Co-op Bank as an icon of Grenadian fortitude and determination. The Bank’s rich history is written in ink of honey produced through thrift and industry by an industrious hive of bees – our staff and customers, over the past 85 years”.

Sales and Service Manager of the Spiceland Mall Retail Banking Unit, Marquez Mc Sween, outlined the Bank’s commitment to its customer-centric strategy by providing a more comfortable and convenient environment to do business, evidenced by the inclusion of the Bank’s Corporate and Commercial Banking unit for corporate clients.

“As impressive and as exciting as this facility is, I am even more excited about the level of service we are now able to deliver given the various amenities that the space now offers – increased teller wickets… customer service stations, a designated area for serving senior citizens and persons with special needs, a doubling of the number of offices for Lending Officers, several offices to accommodate our Corporate and Commercial Banking Specialists, state of the art ATMs and Wi-Fi accessibility throughout”.

Also delivering brief remarks was Prime Minister Mitchell Grenada, following which the building was blessed by Venerable Marshall, and the ribbon cut by long-standing customer Hilda Stephen.

Over the past 85 years, Co-op Bank has experienced several significant milestones, most notably achieving the largest asset base among commercial banks on the island.

In 2001, Spiceland Mall Retail Banking Unit was established in response to customer demands for a presence in the south of the island.

In 2018, Co-op Bank remains committed to meeting the needs of customers and has responded yet again with this new “Excellence Centre”.

Some teachers affected by late salaries and no one-off payment

President of the Grenada Union of Teachers (GUT), Lydon Lewis has confirmed that some teachers did not get their salaries on time for the month of March.

In an interview with THE NEW TODAY newspaper, Lewis blamed “recklessness and careless” on the part of the Finance Department of the Ministry of Education for the non-payment of salaries and the promised one-off payment of $750.00 due to some teachers.

He said the issue was brought to the attention of the Ministry of Education last Thursday and the union was told that some teachers were “accidentally bumped off the system”.

“To us this is unacceptable, we do not understand how this could have happened. They used the Smart Stream System which would just be the teachers name in the system, so we really don’t understand”, he told the newspaper.

“This information was brought to the Ministry of Education from since last Thursday and up today, up to this morning, we’re not aware that it has been corrected. It’s of serious concern to us. We had a long weekend – teachers have had their houses, mortgages and other responsibility put to question because of this non-payment (of salaries)”, he said.

The 2008-13 Congress government of Tillman Thomas was put under the sword by public officers, and all blame laid on Nazim Burke, then Minister of Finance and not the Finance Ministry when salaries were paid to them late on two occasions.

Lewis is questioning the reason given by the Ministry of Education for the failure to pay the salaries and the $750 one-off payment to some teachers.

He said it is rather confusing to the union how some teachers got paid and others did not.

“It is the same smart stream that is used in the entire service, so, I don’t understand how this could happen. I just believe that it’s carelessness and non-performance by the Finance Department and that the Head of the Finance Department just does not bother with teachers and it just boils down to pure recklessness or carelessness on the part of the Ministry of Education”, he said.

“The same list that is being used for the one-off payment, it’s the same list of teachers, so I don’t understand how some get and some didn’t. Again, it just shows how the Ministry of Education operates,” he added.

According to the GUT head, it is not just the non-payment of salaries or the one-off that is a problem but the union also has some other issues with the Finance Department of the Ministry of Education.

“There seem to be a non-caring, almost do as you like, we don’t care attitude from the Finance Department of the Ministry of Education.

“We have complained about several issues including the fact that some teachers are yet to be put in the proper skills. We’ve had issues to deal with the non-payment of teachers, their correct maternity leave benefit. In fact, some of the times, when the teachers holiday period is upon us, teachers are still not paid their holiday pay and be kept on maternity leave, this is not right. So, we are still grappling with a number of issues as it relates to teachers being paid. Study leave is sometimes being affected by the callous attitude of the Ministry of Education.

“So, we’ve been battling this issue for a very long time and it’s just saying that there is a lot of work that has to be done in terms of teachers benefit when it comes to money and as it relates to the implementation by the Ministry of Education.

There has been no official response from the newly elected Keith Mitchell administration on the current late payments of salaries to some teachers.

The Caribbean: Facing a Fatal Fate

High-tide flooding is set to become an every-other-day affair in coastal areas along the Gulf of Mexico and the East Coast of the United States of America by the year 2100. It will also fatally harm the countries of the Caribbean.

As the level of the sea continues to rise, conditions will be calamitous long before that 82-year period is reached.

The resulting flooding will not be storm related; it will occur simply because the level of the sea has risen above the level of land. When storms also strike, conditions will be even worse.

This 82-year projection is based on the assumption that greenhouse gas emissions, which cause global warming and sea level rise, will be curbed. But, there is no evidence of that happening. Indeed, even in the much-vaunted Paris and Bonn accords on Climate Change, there is no legally binding agreement on nations to cut back their emissions.

In the case of the United States, the present administration has backpedaled on commitments made by the previous government and it may yet withdraw the U.S. entirely from the understandings reached so far.

The problems caused by high-tide flooding will adversely impact the states on the East Coast of the United States, ranging from New York through Florida and across to Texas. But the islands of the Caribbean and mainland countries with already low-lying coasts, such as Guyana and Belize, will be affected first.

This latest cause for alarm, concerning high-tide flooding, is identified in a new report from the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration (NOAA). According to the report, high-tide flooding in the mid-Atlantic doubled from an average of three days a year in 2000 to six in 2015.

The report points out that high-tide flooding, which is today an occasional event, will occur every other day by 2100, inundating homes and businesses, including hotels. That is 182 days a year.

Of course, if there is no curbing of greenhouse gas emissions, high-tide flooding will become a happening every day, forcing businesses, homes and agricultural activity further inland.

The migration of such activities away from the coast will be possible in mainland countries at great expense, disruption, loss of property and the creation of refugees, but such inland migration will hardly be possible for the islands of the Caribbean, particularly the small ones.

In the scenario painted by the lead author of the NOAA report, William Sweet, by the time countries wise-up to the increased incidents of flooding and the damaging consequences, the impact will be “chronic”.
Sweet emphasises that the change will not be gradual; it will occur “in leaps and bounds”.

Therefore, NOOA forecasts that by 2050 (just 32 years away), even if there was an immediate halt to global greenhouse emissions, high tide flooding will occur between 50 and 250 days per year along the U.S. East Coast. When this begins to happen, Caribbean islands would already have been ruined.

In the U.S., there is a divided approach to this issue. While authoritative organisations, such as NOOA, are drawing on scientific study and evidence to inform decisions-makers and planners about the escalating and devastating flood risk, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued instructions to its staff to downplay the contribution of human activity to climate change. Even the words “climate change” have disappeared from official communications.

At the level of the government of individual states of the U.S., however, an alliance of 14 of them have vowed to cut emissions and are on track to drop such emissions from 24 to 29 per cent, based on policies already on their books.

The alliance states include: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia and Washington.

The 14 governments recognise that their coastal states are highly vulnerable to sea level rise. That’s why they are motivated to act.

However, these states represent only 36 per cent of the U.S. population. Many more states have to make and implement commitments, similar to the alliance of 14, to reduce gas emissions to a meaningful level.

Caribbean countries have to note that the top three greenhouse gas emitters – China, the U.S. and the European Union – contribute more than half of total global emissions, while the bottom 100 countries only account for 3.5 percent.

For the Caribbean to come anywhere near avoiding the dire conditions that the NOAA report describes, China, the U.S. and the EU countries must significantly reduce their emissions.

As a comparison, the greenhouse gas emissions, excluding land-use change and forestry, in 2014 were as follows: China, 11,911.71; the U.S., 6,371.10; European Union, 4,053.66, Antigua and Barbuda, 1.13; The Bahamas, 2.71; Barbados 3.36.

The biggest greenhouse gas emitter from the Caribbean was Dominican Republic at 33.11 – a mere drop in the Ocean compared with the three largest emitters.

For the Caribbean, no single issue threatens the survival of each of their countries more than global warming and sea level rise. Contending against greenhouse gas emissions should be front and centre of their foreign policy and in their international relations advocacy and bargaining with China, the US and the EU.

The evidence is mounting that the region faces a fatal fate if this crucial matter is neglected or deferred.

(Sir Ronald Sanders is Antigua and Barbuda’s Ambassador to the United States and to the OAS. He is also a Senior Fellow at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies, University of London and Massey College in the University of Toronto)

Allegations of irregularities

Mr. Alex Phillip
Acting Supervisor of Elections
Tanteen Terrace,
St. George’s
GRENADA, W.I.

Dear Mr. Alex Phillip:

A number of allegations of irregularities were brought to your attention by several entities prior to the General Elections which you promised to address after the elections scheduled for 13 March 2018.

Somehow the date of 19 March 2018 stands out in my mind as the date given by you to address those matters. To date, however, I have heard nothing about a report or explanation about those allegations.

One would think that in your capacity of Supervisor of Elections – after reading the preliminary reports put out by the Observer Missions – that you would promptly deal with the complaints and allegations and swiftly issue a televised and well-circulated report/statement in order to defend your reputation and the good name of your office which now both seem to be under a dark cloud.

As a Social activist, you know that – even when others tend to forget or shy away – I raise the issues boldly.

Hopefully, the nation would hear from you soon as to your findings pertaining to these allegations of irregularities which occurred under your watch.

Valerie Thompson

NO PARLIAMENTARY OPPOSITION – A NON-ISSUE!!!

There is no constitutional challenge nor is there any constitutional crisis in Grenada having no Leader of the Opposition in the Parliament.

The constitution provides for the appointment of a Leader of the Opposition, section 66.2, as well as for when such an appointment is not possible, section 62.2; and in both cases, the Governor-General acts in his/her own deliberate judgment.

In fact; Grenada’s recent history attests that for the previous two general elections in January 1999 and in February 2013, when the New National Party (NNP) formed the government after capturing all of the fifteen seats in the House of Representatives, there was no hindrance to the functioning of Parliament and to the governance of the nation, and indeed there was no protest and friction by the Grenadian people.

Furthermore, no significant difference, except merely symbolic, could be realised with the ‘affair and power and integrity’ of Parliament, whether or not there is a Leader of the Opposition, especially in the present construct, circumstance and mode of democracy being paraded in the nation.

In the Sixth Parliament (from 1999 to 2003) though, the House of Representatives had an Opposition Leader in the person of Michael Baptiste when he ‘crossed the floor’ in June 2000.

Throughout the Ninth Parliament (2013 to 2018) there was no Leader of the Opposition, but there were three ‘pretend’ Opposition Senators who had undergone much resentment and ridicule in the Senate, mainly on the basis that they were elections candidates for the ‘de facto’ opposition party, the National Democratic Congress (NDC), and had been appointed by the Governor-General at that time (Sir Carlyle Glean) who has been perceived to be associated with the NDC and soon after resigned (in May 2013).

The argument and anxiety about the appointment of so-called Opposition Senators, as a result of the clean sweep at the March 2018 elections, by yet again Dr. Keith Mitchell-led NNP, is uncalled-for.

Likewise, any clamour by Prime Minister Mitchell, NNP, or other sectors, for members of NDC to accept senatorial positions would be unwarranted, hypocritical and improper, since the Governor-General (Dame Dr. Cecile La Grenade) has to complete the Senate in her own deliberate judgment, ‘having to consult no one or having the advice of no one’, when the office of Leader of the Opposition is vacant.

Instead of focusing all attention to the NDC, this situation provides an opportunity for the many other ambitious politicians who took part in the 2018 general elections to get an experience in the Parliament – these include essentially candidates of the Grenada Empowerment Movement, Grenada Progressive Movement, Grenada Renaissance Party, The Liberal Party and The Progress Party.

The harsh and humiliating personal attacks evident, especially at NDC’s political leader (Nazim Burke), in the last elections propaganda campaigning may have proven effective in harming the credibility and competence and communication of the NDC.

Their performances and utterances in Parliament will be of no respect, especially to the common citizens; thus, the influx of new ‘unblemished’ voices in the Honourable Houses of Parliament would be more acceptable and beneficial.

Insistent efforts to have NDC in the Senate could be the continuation of a political strategy to parade a national consensus and a democratic front, especially on the ‘unreasonable’ issue of assenting to the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ).

It is very difficult to understand ‘consciously and sincerely’ how this CCJ issue remains a priority by the powers-that-be at this time of escalating socio-economic and public services mess, including the delays and denials of legal and moral justice to the common citizens.

Review the previously internet–circulated article “Grenada Constitution Reform: The CCJ Bill (Part A and Part B).

The idea that the Grenadian electorate voted intentionally to have no parliamentary opposition must be discarded and actually, no one should go to general elections to elect a Leader of the Opposition. Indeed, it is irresponsible and inappropriate to conclude that the electorate is not interested to have an Opposition.

The result of the 2018 elections, in terms of having no Leader of the Opposition, was not decided fundamentally by the electorate but by the legal instruments used for the elections, which should have ensured that the people are adequately represented with meaningful participation in Parliament, within a ‘free and fair’ democratic framework.

It is also repugnant and regrettable for the intelligentsia, particularly political scientists of the regional ‘premier and prestigious’ university, to blame the local electorate for having no Leader of the Opposition, due to the failure of the November 2016 constitutional referendum.

The common citizens are at the ‘expediency and exploit’ of the elite; the previously internet-circulated article “Grenada Constitution Reform: Voting with Conscience” also speaks about the tendency of the establishment to impose orders to consolidate its power and glory.

A comprehensive, genuine and objective analysis of all seven Referendum Bills would certainly instruct that they were not designed to significantly transform governance in the interest of the people. Particularly, the Constitution of Grenada (Ensuring the Appointment of Leader of the Opposition) (Amendment) Bill, 2016, purported to alter the Constitution of Grenada to ensure that there is at all times a Leader of the Opposition, did not sufficiently provide to meet its objective.

There was no due process with, and no well intent of, the Bill, it is open to abuse and convoluted for application.

The Bill in its present construct and content, does not allow the constitution with its other existing provisions, to disallow an occasion of when there will be no Leader of the Opposition; however, it fosters the occasion for having an ‘artificial’ Leader of the Opposition and thereby propelling a One-Party State.

Although of its peculiar drawbacks, the electoral Proportional Representation system was rejected by the powers-that-be, without any sound explanations to the people. This has been the case, despite the system is an outstanding recommendation from earlier constitution review committees and the calls by the people for its inclusion in the referendum.

However, the proponents of the so-called Leader of the Opposition Bill boasted of making history, with it being a hybrid version of the First-Pass-The-Post and the Proportional Representation methods of electing members to the House of Representatives.

The nationalists or the progressive forces would seek to justify the presence of NDC in the Senate, as well as in the Social Partners, as a mark of “cooperation over opposition” and by extension as fashioning a Government of National Unity.

However, what is the genuine premise upon which this is done or is being aspired? Is this a form of window dressing or damage control, after the barrage of vilifications and instigation of strife during the elections campaigns, which have greatly confused and polluted the minds of the young people?

In this light, any approach for electoral reform must also consider a mechanism for debriefing, healing and counseling from the campaigns, as well as for a political ombudsman and adherence to a code of conduct.

Nothing should be done to support another political charade like the Social Partners, which seems to be an accomplice to the powers-that-be in its dubious and disturbing ventures, but gaining the applause of regional and international persons.

Universally there is no dispute on the importance of a parliamentary opposition. It has been generally accepted that the role of the Opposition is to scrutinise, apprise and criticise effectively, the policies and administration of the Government and to hold the Government accountable to the electorate.

The Opposition, on behalf of the people, has the opportunities to question the Government and to debate and comment on its actions, which concentrates primarily on legislative and financial matters.

However, this role can only materialise effectively in a conducive setting, and in which the spirit and the principles of democracy, good governance and the constitution is upheld by the Honourable Members of Parliament.

Actually, a parliamentary opposition for the general vigilance and restraint of the ruling administration in engaging in abuses and excesses, is only one of the many such institutional arrangements, yet their existence has proven to have no relevance and meaningful impact.

Emanating from being elected to the House of Representatives, the Leader of the Opposition has two direct constitutional roles further to debating Government’s actions.

These roles relate to assisting with the appointment and removal of three senators of the thirteen members of the Senate (sections 24 and 27.2e) and with the appointment and removal of two of the five members to the Constituency Boundaries Commission (section 55).

Furthermore, with particular reference to the financial dealings of the Government, an opposition member/s usually have a prominent presence for overall oversight on the Public Accounts Committee, which has been established as a procedural rule in the Standing Orders of Parliament (section 50 of the Constitution).
Notwithstanding, the public have been robbed of accurate information on critical national issues, involving assets, patrimony, debt and deals in its name.

Reports on the creditworthiness and corruption indexes of Grenada, often point to a level of shadiness in its governance, even when there is an Opposition in Parliament, a constitutional Director of Audit (section 82), financial rules and regulations, and adoption of pertinent international treaties.

A main political party without a seat in the Parliament can be mighty by monitoring the operations of the Government, marshaling the people, and mounting its plans and projects as alternatives for the nation.

J.K Roberts

Celebration and Appreciation

The St. Andrew’s Anglican Secondary School (SAASS) celebrates Intercol success in 2018. Some will ask what is there to celebrate in 2018 when at the end of the games the Grenada Boys Secondary School won the boys category of this customary showdown which is primarily between SAASS and GBSS.

NAWASA/SAASS proudly display their trophies together with their Principal and Jamila Samuel, the NAWASA Communications Supervisor following the Intercol games

SAASS has not won the girls category either. In fact, history was made as the girls from St. Joseph’s Convent Grenville clinched the victory leaving the defending champs, Anglican High School in dismay and disappointment as they had to settle for second place.

So, SAASS has not won any of these two traditional Intercol categories yet it celebrates. How could this be?

In 2018, this august institution which constitutes a little above 400 boys and a little under 300 girls is indeed a winner. Apart from placing second in the boys’ category and 3rd in the girls’ category, SAASS was awarded what is proving to be one of the most lucrative awards; that of co-ed/combined champion. This award is bestowed upon the school which amasses the most points overall.

For the second year in succession this award was won by this school which has won the male championship 20 times and the girls championship 3 times in the 53 years of Intercol.

SAASS has won because it ended up at the conclusion of the championship, with more rewards than any other school; trophies for the most outstanding senior boy, most outstanding junior boy, most outstanding prep girl, male senior divisional champ, male junior divisional champ as well as the Combined challenge trophy.
Additionally, as part of the prize for the combined champion, a desktop compliments Flow was awarded to the school.

In addition to these mentioned successes, SAASS has earned a partner. This year, NAWASA, one of the most prominent corporate citizens decided to add to its societal contributions by sponsoring the SAASS Intercol teams. This partnership has benefited the school tremendously as it has assisted in alleviating many of the expenses for SAASS.

These costs are concomitant with SAASS having to fill two teams, having a large number of athletes and having to travel from a rural part of the country to participate at the games.NAWASA has lifted the bar and has removed the financial millstone from around the neck of the school. SAASS is much deserving of this assistance as it continues to be a flagship in the Intercol, SAASS continues to be impressive in Intercol, SAASS continues to be consistent in Intercol. SAASS continues to make Intercol interesting.

NAWASA must be highly commended for taking such a bold and worthwhile step. NAWASA SAASS, the new name of the school’s athletic team, is a symbol of this new partnership, and as it was repeated time and again over the stadium’s public address system, one could not help but agree that it had a lovely ring to it.

Everyone associated with the St. Andrew’s Anglican Secondary School (SAASS), the National Water and Sewerage Authority (NAWASA) and with Intercol should be proud. Other corporate citizens should take example from NAWASA and assist the schools in alleviating the costs associated with their participation in Intercol. NAWASA has moved in the right direction and others should follow.
SAASS is very appreciative of the sponsorship and partnership with NAWASA.

Principal at the school, Dianne Abel-Jeffrey, says that this is a blessing and her school will be happily moving forward with NAWASA. She profoundly thanks NAWASA for the sponsorship and for the support that was given during the three days of Intercol to the athletes, by NAWASA’s Marketing Manager Jamila Lewis-Samuel.
SAASS also thanks all of its supporters, past pupils, parents and well-wishers. Some past pupils and parents have pooled their resources together and contributed to the Intercol teams. They have all contributed to the success of NAWASA SAASS. So too have the athletes of NAWASA SAASS. They are encouraged to remain steadfast and to be voracious for victory. SAASS thanks everyone.

NAWASA SAASS also congratulates NAGICO GBSS and St. Joseph’s Convent Grenville on their 2018 Scotia Bank Intercol victories. SAASS further congratulates the title sponsor of the games, Scotia Bank and other sponsors, the owner of the games, the Grenada Association of Principals of Secondary Schools (GAPSS), the organiser, Grenada Secondary Schools Games Association (GSSGA), officials, all participating Secondary Schools, the media, announcers and patrons. You have all fulfilled your duties and have contributed to the success of Intercol 2018.

The progressives are very impatient!!!

Because of Good Friday we can celebrate the risen Christ. Without Peter’s denial and betrayal there would have been no Good Friday. In the midst of betrayal and hypocrisy there is hope. I trust that you had a Blessed Easter and that we can muster the hope required to survive the turbulent times ahead.

As a youth in the 70s, many of us young people dedicated our life’s work to building a nation where the poor and working people could have a decent chance at life. Young impressionable minds, looking up to leaders who spoke a language that inspired us to want to follow their vision of a progressive Grenada. No sacrifice was too much to bear.

We believed that we were fighting against oppression, corruption, nepotism and a rigged democratic election system which always returned the incumbent to office. It is in this context that the 1979-1983 revolution was born.

The implosion of the revolution heralded a different dispensation. Progressive ideas became taboo. All vestiges of the revolution were systematically erased but many of us believed that the values which were instilled in that earlier era would have been the guiding compass steering the remnants of the revolution to live out the virtues we once held.

Today, we have to face a new reality. The stark reality is that the revolution was doomed to fail. Not all progressives were genuine. Who could have ever imagined that these so-called progressives would be comfortable playing the role that they played in support of an NNP regime? The same NNP regime that had actively worked to keep them behind bars.

Who could forget the words of Keith Mitchell when the NDC-led Tillman Thomas government released the 17 from jail: “This is a very dark day in Grenada”, he said. Left up to the NNP, the 17 would still be languishing in prison.

What do the progressives have in common with Keith Mitchell and the NNP? To the naked eye – nothing!! But the very thing which they fought against and which led them to the route of revolution: oppression, corruption, nepotism and a rigged electoral system – is what they have embraced. What a shame!!!

Remember the story of Easter: hypocrisy, betrayal and hope. The hope of hijacking the NNP from Keith Mitchell. The sole mission of the progressives is to ensure that their ‘Judas’ emerges as the next Party Leader and ultimately Prime Minister of Grenada.

Keith Mitchell said that he had unmasked the masked men when he used some very prophetic words in the Parliament warning Tillman Thomas about the representative for the Town of St. George. He now needs to heed his own warning.

He also needs to remember that the progressives are very impatient and won’t be waiting indefinitely. So, hurry up and hand over the reins. The Progressive are ready to once again rule Grenada. It’s Peter time!!

To be forewarned is to be forearmed.

Revolutionary Fighter