In a press conference hosted on Tuesday morning, (17th July), at the Ocean Terrace Inn, in Fortlands, Basseterre, Grant announced to the country, “Today, after many months of reflection and discussions, I have tendered my resignation as political leader of the People’s Action Movement, effective as of 30th September, 2012.”
The PAM leader was accompanied by his two Deputy Political Leaders, MPs Shawn Richards and Eugene Hamilton. Opposition Senator, Vincent Byron, Deputy Party Chairpersons, Dr. Charles Warner and Jonel Powell were also amongst the PAM hierarchy, who were present to support their leader.
Grant explained that he has always put national interests first. “I have always been in the forefront of our party’s role in providing a realistic alternative and perspective on governmental decisions, which cannot be overstated.”
The Harvard graduate said that under his political leadership, he has been immensely proud of the strides that his party has made and the many fights that they have led all in the interest of the people of St. Kitts and Nevis. “PAM has gone from having no representation in the House of Assembly when I began, to having three persons in the House and being a strong force in the fight to take our country back from the brink. We also garnered the most votes in the history of our party in the last elections.”
He admitted though that it was indeed a great privilege to serve in “…this great party with so many talented and dedicated colleagues. Recently, we initiated a process to implement some overdue reforms within our party, to empower the grassroots and build the infrastructure which will ultimately leave PAM poised to meet the challenges of the future.”
He said that it is in this vein that he kept the commitment that he made over 10 years ago to the supporters of the People’s Action Movement. “This was the commitment that I made for a maximum of 10 years at the helm of the party. I also gave a commitment of 10 years leading the country. This is why I vigorously championed the cause, both for fixed date elections and for a fixed term for the office of Prime minister-my reason for fixed terms is the strong belief that it is a disservice to our country to have one person at the helm for any extended period of time; fresh new blood with new perspectives is always good for any institution.”
“That is why at the end of the last election, I discussed with my colleagues, that it was time for me to step aside as Leader of the Party.”
Grant has however assured the residents of the constituency where he last ran as a candidate that their fight will continue with him as their candidate in the next General Elections.
He also had a message for his party supporters in general, “We renew our strength and will continue to stride towards change.”
The process for the selection of a new National Political Leader will soon begin, to allow for the new leadership to take office from 1st October, 2012. Meanwhile, the announcement of candidates for five constituencies, (East Basseterre, Central Basseterre, West Basseterre, St. Paul’s and Constituency Number 7-that includes districts such as Lodge, Molineux, Tabernacle, etc.) will soon be made to the public.