St. Kitts & Nevis 113 Days After: Are We Better Off?

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SKN PULSE, Thursday 4th June 2015 – If politics has taught us anything over the years, it’s that one constant that politics highlights hypocrisy, the art of deceitfulness and the art of trickery. Today, looking at the current scope of the political arena in Saint Kitts And Nevis, one has to ask: Are You Better Off Under Team Unity?

With a new era of political unison before us, 1) Victimization, 2) Political Grandstanding, 3) Crime, 4) Job creation, 5) Citizenship By Investment Program, 6) SIDF, 7) PEP, 8) Financial Allocation to Nevis, 9) VAT Removal and the 10) Sugar Workers Compensation agreement are all dominant factors that are evident in the scheme of politics presently in St. Kitts And Nevis.

Bearing such in mind, now that reality has sunk in, Crime still presents a mountain of problems for Saint Kitts and Nevis. In three months under Team Unity, eleven (11) murders have plagued the Federation. After a charade in opposition, the norm continues undeterred and undetected.

While violent crime escalates, retirees and party hacks continue to occupy the majority of statutory boards and ambassadorial positions as it is deemed that young persons are neither qualified or mature enough to handle responsibility. Interestingly, there aren’t any mechanisms to facilitate growth or allow for transitioning to occur by grooming young individuals so that they may pick up the requisite skills.

Be that as it may, the Saint Kitts And Nevis Labour Party has charged Team Unity with indulging in mass victimisation. While persons are transferred, others are terminated or sent on leave but there hasn’t been any cushion provided to access new jobs. Thus it begs the question, what is the government’s role? Isn’t it to ensure it’s citizens are given a cushion to survive? Sadly, many onlookers have lamented that the actions of the government leaves a lot to be desired.

The first major event hosting dubbed the CARIFTA Games, where St. Kitts and Nevis received bad publicity over the accommodation of other Caribbean athletes, gave an in-depth view of a talk approach rather than a hands-on approach. Thereafter, a cloud of doubt was raised about the Caribbean Premier League as it was touted that games may not be held again because financial obligations weren’t met. Needless to say common sense prevailed and resolves were sought.

Subsequently, the Citizenship By Investment Program seems to be at a halt as there is talk about an increase in cost. Sadly, we are now faced with competition from our regional partners in Dominica and Antigua. Notably, our once popular and envied earner has been playing second fiddle ever since. More than ever, the reality has hit home as the constant rants to destroy Dr. Douglas then are slowly hampering the program now. Thus, Team Unity as an opposition force then aided tremendously in etching a gloomy picture in the minds of potential investors.

On the contrary, the government of the day must be applauded for initiating the renaming of the then Silver Jubilee to the Kim Collins Athletic Stadium. More over, ensuring the removal of VAT on funeral expenses and the remainder of food items that were not exempted by Labour. As a result, easing the burden off of the common man. Also, kudos must be given to Team Unity for the initiation of the Sugar Workers Compensation Scheme as they were able to secure a $16 Million Eastern Caribbean dollar grant from Venezuela. However, the program as is will create controversy for it appears that only certain sugar workers would qualify which presents a totally different scenario then that which was campaigned on.

Added to this, they have initiated the implementation of giving budgetary support to Nevis on a monthly basis. An initial payment of $10, 000 000.00 was made and thus would continue over a period of time. This in itself has caused question after question to be asked. As the representatives for the St. Kitts and Nevis Labour Party has elicited the grounds on which Nevis is getting budgetary support since the CCM led Administration has pulled out of the Revenue sharing and VAT arrangements.

Furthermore, the implementation of the St. Kitts and Nevis Defence Force as a permanent fixture in Nevis also is a feat that warrants some merit as well. However, it must be noted that despite the arrival of the Defence Force as a permanent fixture, the former Nevis Island Administration had the services of the Delta Squad during their tenure in office. This then which was viewed by those opposite as a hindrance.

In conclusion, according to Hon. David A. Hardy when we pull back the layers of government services, the most fundamental and indispensable virtues are public safety and social order.

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