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Wrong is wrong – Opposition Leader

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Tue, Jan 13, 2015

Editor: Following is the substance of the report made to me by the Hon Nigel “Nature” Stephenson and the decisions I have taken in respect thereof, in my capacity as President of the New Democratic Party and Leader of the Parliamentary Opposition.{{more}}

The Hon. Mr Stephenson entered into an agreement with Mr Bernard Punnett for the purchase of a Suzuki Escudo jeep bearing license number PS 759. In July 2009, Mr Stephenson accepted delivery of the vehicle and has been paying for the vehicle by instalments. At the time, the vehicle bore a 2009 registration sticker on its windshield which expired in September 2010, and which it continued to bear until December 2014, when mechanical problems forced Mr Stephenson to take the vehicle off the road.

Mr Stephenson consistently operated the vehicle in an unlicensed and uninsured state for the ensuing five (5) years. This was wrong and we condemn it. Mr Stephenson has apologised orally and in writing for his conduct.

I observe the following:-

That having been elected by the people of South Leeward to the House of Representatives,

Mr Stephenson is rightfully held to a higher standard of accountability than his electors. In this respect, I state unequivocally that he has fallen short and has disappointed himself, his party and his country.

The New Democratic Party – of which Mr Stephenson is a member and I am leader – describes itself to Vincentians as intolerant of corruption and misbehaviour in public office; and on behalf of Vincentians, has adopted a critical posture in relation not only to the several misdeeds of the ULP Administration but the absence of any or any appropriate sanctions for those misdeeds.

The process of restoring St Vincent and the Grenadines begins, therefore, with us.

To this end, I have instructed the Hon. Mr Stephenson to:

I. Pay immediately all outstanding vehicle registration fees to the Licensing Authority;

II. Insure the vehicle and rectify its legal ownership;

III. Appear before the Disciplinary Committee of the New Democratic Party on Tuesday 20th January 2015.

Respectfully,

Hon Arnhim Eustace

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