Another Caribbean leader says there is no reason to intervene in the domestic politics in the Federation of St Kitts and Nevis.
Hours after the prime minister of St Vincent and Grenadines, Dr Ralph Gonsalves, said there is no reason for the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and international organisations to intervene in what is a domestic political issue in St Kitts and Nevis, the prime minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Dr Baldwin Spencer sided with the Vincentian leader.
Opposition parliamentarians in Basseterre filed a motion of no confidence with the Clerk of the National Assembly and later took the matter to the High Court, where it is still to be heard.
CMC news reported that the Antigua and Barbuda prime minister said, while one may be sympathetic to the issues, both groupings must carefully measure to what extent they can get involved in what he called “domestic affairs”.
|Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer|
“There are procedures involved in resolving those matters. Yes, we can speak to the tenets of democracy, parliamentary democracy and what West Indian system speaks to, but to be able to have to take direct positions, I believe that we may be stepping a little beyond this,” Spencer said in a newscast aired on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.
“I mean clearly, it’s an issue that requires attention, but really and truly it has to be addressed more directly and more frontally at the local level. Not that we are unmindful of the issues involved, but we have to very careful how we tread there,” said the Antigua and Barbuda prime minister.
On Monday, CCM News reported Gonsalves as saying, while he has some concerns about the situation, there is no reason for the CARICOM and the OECS to get involved in an issue the opposition has compounded.
“Can a regional or international organization intervene in the internal affairs of a country where there is no public disorder or breakdown of law and order? Where there is just a political conflict which is still being played out. Where the internal processes are not yet exhausted, internal processes here, meaning the internal legal processes which have been engaged by the very persons who are complaining,” said Gonsalves.
|St Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves|
Gonsalves said, although the political situation in the twin-island Federation is worrying, “It is a political question that ought to be resolved politically.”
The outspoken Caribbean leader also took on the opposition’s argument on the legitimacy of the government and did not mince words as he suggested that the disgruntled MPs (Dr Timothy Harris and Sam Condor) are not approaching this issue with clean hands.
“People may reasonably ask why the two representatives don’t go and have by-elections in the way that Jack Warner did? Win their by-elections and say look this is what the people want and this is what people think of what you are doing?
“But to ponder on this issue. Two of you were elected on the ticket of the (Labour Party) government. You now want to bring down the government. Is there not a matter of public morality to attest to in relation to that action?” asked the Vincentian prime minister.