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St. Lucia now in deep, deep hole – former PM

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St. Lucians are paying a heavy price for removing the St.Lucia Labour Party (SLP) from office merely on the basis of change, says Kenny Anthony, that country’s former prime minister.{{more}}

Delivering the keynote address at the Unity Labour Party’s (ULP) 16th Convention, Anthony, the Political Leader of the Opposition SLP, declared that his country is rife with corruption from top down, under the new administration which defeated his government on December 11, 2006.

“It has become clearer and clearer. The people of St. Lucia have paid a heavy price for their decision,” says Anthony.

He told the large crowd that looking back, his administration was removed from office although it appears to have done nearly everything right.

Unemployment was reduced, universal secondary education was introduced, and the construction of a major psychological hospital, as well as a proper road network, were hallmarks of hisadministration, he said.

He noted that his country now has one of the most extraordinary and unusual governments in place.

St. Lucia has become the first country in the Commonwealth Caribbean to have a minister who is a convicted felon, stated Anthony.

Likewise, his country is the first in the Commonwealth Caribbean to have a minister of government suing the administration for damages, although he is serving as a minister at the moment, Anthony added.

Anthony also said St. Lucians witnessed the arrest of two Parliamentarians for breaching traffic laws, only to watch the two cases disappear.

“I say all of this to make the simple point that the Government of St. Lucia has been captured by criminal elements,” said Anthony.

Even crime has got out of control in St.Lucia, said Anthony.

He disclosed that 40 murders took place last year, and already for this year, nine have been committed.

“We in St. Lucia now find ourselves in a deep, deep hole,” said Anthony.

He warned that as Vincentians prepare to go to the polls, opponents of Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves, will try to demonise him.

Anthony challenged Vincentians, especially supporters of the ULP, to be on their guard.

He used the opportunity to appeal to the gathering not to make the same mistake as St. Lucians.

Buoyant with optimism, Anthony stated that the ULP, which won the General Elections of 2001 and 2005, can win a third term in office. However, the Party will have to address certain pertinent issues between now and the General Elections.

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