Mitchell’s prediction is wrong, yet again – Gonsalves
Sir James Mitchell is wrong.
That is the response of Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves to a prediction by the former prime minister that opposition leader Dr Godwin Friday is ahead of Gonsalves in the polls and is likely to win the general elections.
“Sir James said the same thing in 2001, 2005, 2010, 2015 and he was wrong in each of them and he would be wrong in this one,” Gonsalves told listeners of NBC Radio this week.
Sir James, the founder of the NDP, told BOOM FM’s OMG in the Morning radio show on July 7, that the party he founded can win the next general elections as recent polls have shown that Friday is ahead of the Prime Minister and his son finance minister Camillo Gonsalves when it comes to likability and integrity.
But Ralph Gonsalves said there is always talk about polls, and the ULP does polls also.
“Sir James probably realizing that they have been defeated five times already with majority votes and majority of seats.
“They were defeated when Sir James was leader in 1998, defeated in popular votes and they realize that if you now go get a six defeat in popular vote and five defeat with the seats, the NDP will have to do what the News editorial, I have been advised, suggested to them last week. Take the option like LIAT, dissolve, wheel and come again,” the Prime Minister said.
Gonsalves said Sir James has been in politics as a leader of the country and led the country for 17 years and while he does not want to throw “any cold water” on any contribution which Sir James has made, “the truth of the matter is this, where the swing appeared against him (Sir James) in 1998, there is no such swing against the ULP, and they can try all the propaganda they want to try.”
The Prime Minister opined that Sir James is saying that Friday is ahead now because the general elections are a few months away.
“But when they lose again, he is going to tell them, ‘I told you not to waste your five years fighting a case in the court. Elections are over, you lost it fair and square move on and organize yourself’,” Gonsalves commented.
The court matter being spoken about are the Election Petitions the NDP filed after the last General Elections in 2015. The High Court dismissed both petitions and the appeals, filed by the NDP, have not yet been heard.
“Does anybody know what the NDP stands for anymore? Gonsalves questioned.
He said that it is alright for Sir James to come into the political arena so he does not want to be unduly critical of him.
“Sir James told them after the Referendum that it is not the general elections and Ralph is a hard nut to crack. If he think I was hard in 2009, 2010, I am harder now, I am harder now to crack,” the ULP political leader stated while opining that the ULP is going to do better than the 2015 elections, both in percentage of votes and the number of seats.
“…And when that happen I don’t know where they will go,” Gonsalves said.
He noted that he has been a political activist for 52 years and he is the longest serving person in electoral politics in the region, some 41 years.