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Ralph Gonsalves loves people

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10.DEC.10

Editor: My first impression in the early 1980s of Dr Ralph Gonsalves was rather negative. As a young Police Officer, I used to view him as a dreaded communist, subversive etc. I think this was partly due to what I was told about him at Training School, and also because of the political climate of that era.{{more}}

However, this all changed one day as I was at the High Courts in Kingstown. There was this guy who was a defendant in a case. He claimed that he was born in St. Vincent and had to migrate, as an infant, to a nearby country, owing to domestic problems.

He returned as a young man to try to reconnect with his relatives but was handed some very harsh and inhumane treatment. Frustrated and without money, he decided to steal a speed boat to return to his home. Things did not go well, however. He went adrift for 25 days and almost died. He was picked up in another country and brought back to St. Vincent to stand trial.

He pled guilty and gave a very moving explanation of the circumstances. There was a battery of lawyers in court at that time. Of all of them, only Dr. Gonsalves stood up with tears in his eyes, literally, to offer pro bono help. Sure enough, the Judge, visibly touched also, reprimanded and dischared the defendant.

I then thought to mysely,”this man loves people, he is not what many people portray him to be”. I think his time in office as Prime Minister gives testimony to this. I look at the projects he has undertaken and I see that they are all to benefit the people and not necessarily individuals. I do wish him all the best on election day. I know that if the people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines were to vote on issues Dr. Gonsalves will have another term in office.

Ex-policeman

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