2008 is already living up to its promise to be an eventful year in Grenada, particularly in the political arena. Elections are due some time this year – the actual date of which Keith Mitchell is holding close to his chest. And with good reason.
He is going to loose and he knows it.
Back in January, Ricky Singh wrote an article on the “Winds of Change” Elections happening throughout the Caribbean. Significant to this post is this
A crucial difference between Musa’s quest for a third-term government and that of Mitchell’s bid for a fourth consecutive term is that the former had secured his March 2003 electoral victory not just with a landslide 22-seat majority, but 53 per cent of the valid popular votes.
In contrast, the latter had survived defeat by a one-seat margin (8 to 7) and with less than 50 per cent of the votes cast (48 per cent NNP to the NDC’s 45.06 per cent) for the 15-member House of Representatives.
That one-seat majority came from Carriacou by a mere six votes. It was unsuccessfully challenged and Mitchell’s NNP has been engaged since in strenuous political manoeuvres to maintain power amid natural and man-made disasters.
Not unexpectedly, Prime Minister Mitchell was quick to declare, following the defeat of Arthur’s government in Barbados, that he did not recognise the changing administrations as any political wind of change blowing across Caricom.
It is a pity that PM Mitchell didn’t mention to his political colleagues that they too should be as dismissive of the present political climate as he was. It might have prevented Anthony Boatswain, the Minister of Economic Development & Planning, from plunging himself, his government and the beseiged people of Grenada into total shame and embarassment.
“Brothers and sisters what has been happening, we’ve been having an unfortunate and hostile wind blowing through the Caribbean,” he said.
“A hostile wind resulting in higher prizes; a hostile wind resulting in even some undesirables getting into government. But I can tell you what we want in Grenada and the Caribbean is not a wind of change, but a change in the wind that has been blowing in the region.”
As of today at noon, a full two days after this speech, no one in government has publically acknowledged Minister Boatswain’s statements. Unfortunately for them, the speech which was recorded by local media outlets, has hit the regional news outlets. The CMC regional news roundups reference this comment in almost every broadcast. Local radio and TV talk-shows hosts have been inundated with calls from ordinary Grenadians voicing outrage, shock and shame. Some people even asked one of the talk-show hosts to “call up”the other Caribbean governments “and tell dem we sorry”. Opposition MP Peter David had to hold a press conference to issue an apology on behalf of the citizens of the country. Meanwhile, dead silence from EmbarassmentCentral.
I for one would love to be a fly on the wall when PM Mitchell shows up for any of the regional conferences scheduled for the next few days.