100 Days Since Filing of Motion of No Confidence

“This is a miscarriage of justice and a crime against democracy”, said the National Political Leader of the opposition People’s Action Movement, (PAM), Mr. Shawn Richards, on Thursday 21st March, the day of the 100 days milestone.

It is now very clear to everyone however that Speaker Martin, whose appointment to the position was personally made possible by Prime Minister Dr. Denzil Douglas, does not truly control his own actions and is being dictated to and being told that he cannot allow the motion to come to parliament. However, this is being permitted, though constitutionally, it is the Speaker who has the constitutional mandate to manage the affairs of the Assembly and it is the Speaker who sets the agenda for the sittings of the parliament.

Though the opposition has formally written to the Speaker, to urge him to convene parliament to hear the motion, the Speaker, apart from an initial response to acknowledge receipt of the motion, has been silent and not responding to any expressions of concern, from anyone. Alarms about the continued delay have been raised by some of the most important non-governmental organizations in the country, including the Bar Association, the Chamber of Industry & Commerce, Christian Council, Hotel & Tourism Association and the Evangelical Association. These groups have written to the Speaker but the public has not been told of any responses to date from him, to these letters of worry.

The people in the country have made their voices heard through newspaper articles and calls to radio talk shows, yet no response and no action to bring the motion to the Assembly.

“It is however obvious why the Prime Minister and the Speaker are hiding behind all types of excuses and employing various tactics to prevent the vote from reaching the parliament. It is now pellucid that the country and the people no longer have any confidence in the Prime Minister and his Labour Administration. He is therefore aware that his government will lose the vote and his 17 year misrule will come to an end.” said Richards.

He has embarrassed the nation with his disrespectful utterances; he has been governing the Federation in such a manner which has undermined our Constitution, has led to disastrous economic outturns and a decreasing lack of public confidence in his leadership.

As the opposition we have also expressed of lack of confidence in the Government because of its actions to swap over 1,200 acres of land that will certainly be sold off to foreign entities, depriving our own people from gaining a stake in their own country. The high cost of electricity rates, the mismanagement of the financial affairs of St. Kitts and Nevis thereby incurring a massive national debt, with defaults on bond payments and the imposition of haircuts without regard to the consequences for bondholders and the Country’s financial image, are other reasons why the country no longer has any confidence in the government and feels that the Prime Minister is taking the nation in the wrong direction, argued the PAM Leader.

The attempt to further increase the number of senators in parliament, in the face of the IMF calls for a lessening of public expenditure, and the misuse of the SIDF as an alternative consolidated fund, to receive moneys which constitutionally are to be paid into the consolidated fund, and thereby insulating the foundation from parliamentary and audit scrutiny and oversight, are other reasons for the Motion of No Confidence.

The abuse of the electoral system in the country is equally central to PAM’s reasons to call for this motion.

“We again call on the Prime Minister and the Speaker to allow the Motion of No Confidence, call fresh elections or resign with immediate effect,” demanded Richards, who is the parliamentary Representative for Sandy Point.

The People’s Action Movement remains solid in its support with other colleagues on the opposition side in parliament and two others from the Labour Party, who are united with us in support of this Motion and as we said in the official document with the motion sent to the Speaker, “we implore members on the Government side to support this critical measure as the first step in ushering in a new paradigm of transparent, accountable and consultative leadership for the people of St. Kitts and Nevis.

We also call on the people of St. Kitts and Nevis to do their part in forcing the Prime Minister and the Speaker to do what is right, what is legal and what is constitutional, and allow the Motion of No confidence without further delay. As we mark this 100 Days of delays, we urge Kittitians and Nevisians to become active and make their concerns known.



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