The opposition United Workers Party (UWP) is ready to protest over the ‘unacceptable bahaviour’ of House of Assembly Speaker Claudius Francis.
“If the Speaker of the House wants to see protest action, we are prepared to go the full length to make our voices be heard and let him understand where power truly lies,” UWP Public Relations Officer (PRO) Lenard ‘Spider’ Montoute stated.
The former Gros Islet MP spoke at a news conference earlier this week.
Montoute accused the House Speaker of abuse of authority.
“So we must ensure we send a strong message to the parliament and to the speaker of the house that such unacceptable behaviour will not be tolerated by the United Workers Party,” he declared.
Montoute said opposition leader and Micoud South MP, Allen Chastanet was illegally detained in the House of Assembly.
“The Speaker of the House insisted that he had to stay, and when he did not comply, he ordered the officer to stop him and bring him back. Now that is an abuse of power. That is an abuse of authority. The Speaker has authority to ask someone to leave the chamber. But you cannot prevent someone from leaving,” the former Gros Islet MP told this week’s news conference.
“What is happening here is not about Allen Chastanet. It’s about our democracy. And when a government goes to lengths to try to silence the opposition, we the people in this country, we must take note,” Montoute noted.
On Tuesday, the Saint Lucia House of Assembly suspended Allen Chastanet for not apologising and retracting a statement alleging government corruption.
Before the suspension vote, the former Prime Minister was preparing to leave when the Speaker told him he should not.
“Officer, he shall not leave. Officer, he shall not leave,” Francis said to the police on duty as Chastanet exited the house, followed by two female officers.
The Micoud South MP returned to the Chamber with the officers behind him and took his seat.
Headline photo: Lenard ‘Spider’ Montoute stock image.