The General Secretary of the opposition Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP), Leo Clarke, has asserted that Sarah Flood-Beaubrun’s appointment as a government minister is not surprising.
She was sworn in yesterday as Minister in the Ministry of Finance, Economic Growth, Job Creation, External Affairs and the Public Service
“We always knew that Mrs. Flood-Beaubrun would not settle to be Deputy Speaker of the House and therefore Allen Chastanet was forced to handle the matter,” Clarke said.
He described as “interesting”, Chastanet’s assertion that the House of Assembly can operate without a Deputy Speaker.
“This is a matter that we are very curious about and we are checking it out – we are looking at what the constitution says and examining it very closely,” the SLP General Secretary disclosed.
He said that if necessary, the SLP would consult with some legal minds to make sure that the right thing is being done.
Flood-Beaubrun had to resign the post to take up her ministerial appointment, since she could not be both Deputy Speaker and a member of cabinet.
Clarke described the appointment of the Castries Central MP as the country’s newest government minister as a continuation of the trend of increasing the number of cabinet members.
Flood-Beaubrun’s appointment brought the number to sixteen.
“By UWP logic, if we listen to what was said earlier about the new configuration of ministries and the appointment of fifteen, now that there are sixteen I would have to say by the same logic that perhaps the cost to government has reduced because this is the sort of thing that the UWP has been trying to sell – the more people they put into government, the less it would cost than under the labour party,” Clarke stated.
He remarked that the nation will see how that works out.
The SLP official declared that the time has come to check the facts.
He recalled that the labour party was placed under a lot of pressure in relation to persons who were appointed on contract immediately after the 2011 elections.
He said that an objective examination of what happened at the time would reveal that the number of persons appointed by the then labour administration was “severely less” than those appointed by the United Workers Party.
Clarke observed that the UWP got away with it and now believes that it can get away with anything and say anything to the electorate.
He called on the UWP to settle down and take the management of the country seriously.