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Fya Empress refutes NDP’s claims of victimization

Fya Empress refutes NDP’s claims of  victimization

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Lornette ‘Fya Empress’ Nedd says there is no truth to the statement that she did not perform at a rally of the New Democratic Party’s (NDP) last Saturday because of threats made to her and her family by the Unity Labour Party (ULP).

The Trinidadian based, Vincentian born entertainer made her first ever appearance on a ULP {{more}}platform last Saturday at the Calliaqua Playing Field, not to endorse the party, but to set the record straight about why she was a no-show at the NDP’s event that was happening at the same time at Barrouallie.

Fya Empress appeared at Calliaqua about two and a half hours after an annoucement appeared at 7:44 p.m. on the NDP’s Facebook page, claiming that threats of victimization had forced Fya Empress to abandon plans to perform at the NDP event.

“We regret to announce that one of the contracted performers who was to appear here tonight has withdrawn at the last minute; after her family had come under pressure and threats of victimisation by the DYING regime of Ralph Gonsalves. We stand in solidarity and sympathy with Fyah Empress, who dearly wanted to perform here tonight. This latest action by this government emphasises the fear and intimidation with which they have sought to rule.

Fortunately, the era of fear and victimisation ends on December 9th”, said the Facebook announcement by the NDP.

Fya Empress, who has performed for the NDP previously, decided to set the record straight on a ULP platform after reading what the NDP had posted.

Wearing a hat that was pulled low down over her face, a blue sleeveless top and short blue jeans, Fya Empress, who was introduced to the crowd by Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, said that she was hired by the NDP, but opted out because of personal reasons.

Initially, those in attendance at the ULP rally booed when the entertainer appeared, but the boos turned to cheers as she began to tell her story.

“I was not supposed to be here tonight; in fact, I was hired to sing by the NDP and I decided to make a choice,” said Fya Empress”, adding, “it was my own and I want you all to know that it was my own choice because at the end of the day family comes first.”

The former calypso, ragga soca and road march monarch said when she got the call to come to St Vincent to perform, she wanted to hear what her parents had to say.

“…my very first thing is to hear what my mother and father would say, so when they called, I asked to speak to my father and his words were ‘I don’t really want to talk to you right now’ and that was coming from my dad and me being a first-born, you must know how I feel about that; family comes first.”

She went on, “so what I am here to say is that 24 hours ago I gave the NDP notice that I would not be performing because of my family, but they chose instead to talk about victimization. Let me say it here tonight and I know that they will hear it loud and clear that I was not victimized in any way and my family has not been victimized in any way by the ULP.”

On leaving the stage Fya Empress stressed, “on Election Day my people vote for what you want; family comes first.”

Commenting on the incident, Gonsalves described the appearance of the artiste as a “surprise,” saying she was a very talented “lady of song.”

He said that Fya Empress was supposed to be in Barrouallie, but cancelled because of her parents’ objection.

“…she was not coming here, but the NDP has put some falsehood on the Internet and they are saying certain things about her that she has been intimidated and threatened not to perform and she has decided to come because it is so unfair to say such a thing, so wrong and so false, because they say so many false things that she said that she has come here to tell the people of SVG why she did not go down in Barrouallie with the NDP,” said the Prime Minister.

He added, “…you notice, she didn’t come here in any ULP shirt; that is why I said it is a surprise. So, I want to give my dear sister, who has her roots in Richland Park and South Rivers, who is very talented, to tell you, because it is a terrible thing when you tell lies on people.”

Fya Empress created history here in 2012 when she became the first person to win the national calypso crown, the national ragga soca monarch competition and the road march title in the same year.

During last Saturday’s ULP rally at Calliaqua, local artistes Rondy ‘Luta’ McIntosh, Delroy ‘Fireman’ Hooper’, Shaunelle McKenzie and Gamal ‘Skinny’ Fabulous Doyle endorsed the ULP with songs penned specifically for the 2015 General Elections.

The NDP’s event in Barrouallie saw performances from, among others, Kevin Lyttle, Raeon ‘Madzart’ Primus, Elvis ‘Abijah’ Abbey, Kirk ‘Ninja’ Knights, Andrew Lynch, Kahalia Beache and Akene ‘Prez’ Keizer.(LC)

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