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Lewis’ future in politics uncertain

Lewis’ future in politics uncertain


Chair of the New Democratic Party (NDP) Dr Linton Lewis is indecisive about his future in politics and has stated categorically that he is not going to sacrifice his academic career on the altar of political expediency.

Since registering his fourth consecutive loss in general elections as an NDP candidate last December, Dr Lewis has been somewhat quiet,{{more}} but stated to SEARCHLIGHT yesterday that his absence has nothing to do with his recent defeat as a candidate in East St George.

He revealed that since the conclusion of elections, he has used his time to write a textbook on international law and he has been spending a lot of time out of St Vincent and the Grenadines. Lewis described his textbook as very “comprehensive and long,” with over 600 pages.

“I have not had an opportunity to think of politics in any meaningful way,” said Lewis, who added that he has, however, been listening to different opinions and statements related to him and politics, while although not involved, he is aware of the NDP’s election petitions.

“I do not want to be distracted or influenced, so I have not given any serious thoughts to my political future. After my textbook, I will be able to determine,” said Lewis, via telephone. He added that he has given 16 years of his life to Vincentian politics, having resigned from his job as the only black lecturer at what was one of Europe’s top law schools, The University of Durham.

He said that he did not enter politics because of his dislike for any party or anyone, but to serve his country, something he thinks he has done.

“I had no hidden agenda or wanted to spite anyone. I came when we (NDP) were going to lose and entered knowing I was going to lose. So I don’t want nobody to think that I entered being an opportunist,” said Lewis, who stressed that he has been a nationalist in his approach, but now he has to question whether he should continue as a politician or further develop his academic career.

He said that he has written 61 scholarly articles on things like constitutional reform and the proceeds of crime and in his opinion, his involvement in politics has thwarted what he considers to be a vital career in academia.

“I am wondering whether or not I should focus on developing that,” he said, adding that he pursued his PHD so as to remain in academia and make a contribution in that area.

“I have to focus on whether I want to continue and develop, or subject myself to ridicule and derogatory degrading, malignant, malevolent remarks,” noted the attorney, who said also that he has always been a person capable of multitasking, as is evident in his career as an accountant and lawyer.

He observed that as it relates to his continued involvement in politics, it is not an issue of where he is leaning, but an issue of what is considered to be his natural progression at the moment.

“One thing I can assure you is that I am not going to sacrifice my academic career on the altar of political expediency. Essentially, what I am saying is that if they can be both developed simultaneously, which is very challenging, then so be it. A number of politicians have been able to do it, but right now for me it’s about developing my career,” he stressed.

The politician was on April 4 re-elected unopposed as chair of the Trust Fund of the Caribbean Court of Justice and issued with a diplomatic identification card by the government of Trinidad and Tobago.(LC)