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Leacock says his loyalty lies with Eustace as leader

Leacock says his loyalty lies with Eustace as leader


First Vice President of the New Democratic Party (NDP) St. Clair Leacock is expressing confidence in the leadership of Arnhim Eustace, President of the NDP and Leader of the Opposition, despite the Party’s three consecutive defeats at the polls.{{more}}}

Although some supporters of the NDP are questioning Eustace’s ability to lead the Party into victory, Leacock is making it explicitly clear that his loyalty lies with Eustace as leader of the Party.

“As we speak at this time, I still remain faithful to Mr. Eustace’s leadership and I still hold firm to the view that he who must lead must demonstrate the ability to follow.

“If the occasion arises where I must lead the New Democratic Party, I would ideally want that to be done with the blessings of not just the constitution of the New Democratic Party, but the support of Mr. Eustace,” said Leacock, who won the Central Kingstown seat in the December 13, 2010 General Elections, in his second attempt at the polls.

Leacock told SEARCHLIGHT on Sunday, January 2, in an exclusive interview, that he does not think the issue of a new leader for the NDP has arisen.

“I hear the calls from the public, I hear the calls from institutions, and I hear the calls regionally and internationally. But I still hold the view at the moment, that we don’t need to be fratricidal or suicidal for that matter and the best thing is to continue to work in union with Mr. Eustace at this time and politics will take its course,” said Leacock.

Leacock said he is a leader in his own right, and he will use his efforts to continue to lend support to Eustace and build the NDP.

Eustace, born in 1945, is an economist who served in the Sir James Mitchell-led administration as Minister of Finance. He contested the 1998 General Elections and successfully clinched the East Kingstown seat, which he has held since then. On October 27, 2000, he became Prime Minister when Sir James Mitchell, founder of the NDP, retired. Eustace’s tenure as Prime Minister lasted five months, as in the next parliamentary elections, held on March 28, 2001, the NDP suffered a landslide defeat, retaining only three of the 15 seats.