PRESS RELEASE:– The Saint Lucia Labour Party believes that Saint Lucians should be very concerned with the speed with which Hon Allen Chastanet is demonstrating his lack of temperament for the Office of Prime Minister.
The SLP notes that in the first two working days of this week, Prime Minister Allen Chastanet confirmed that he and Minister Ezekiel Joseph undertook a joyride to Europe and Morocco where they were unable to meet persons of governmental authority in any of the countries they visited – an itinerary which should have been planned before their departure.
Following the earlier visit to the American Embassy in Barbados, Mr. Chastanet should have learnt that Prime Minister’s do not just travel to other countries without planning and arranging meetings, especially if the taxpayers are the ones paying the bill.
According to the SLP, Mr. Chastanet then reaffirmed during a Monday morning press conference that he has no intention of honoring his Party‘s Manifesto promise (page 66) to end political patronage in the Foreign Service by standing firmly behind the appointment of UWP Chairman, Guy Mayers, to the position of High Commissioner to London.
It should be noted that it’s a breach of diplomatic practice to announce a diplomatic appointment before the receiving country has provided its agreement. In the process of supporting Guy Mayers, the Prime Minister has assumed the role of judge and jury to free Mayers of any association with the controversial Operation Restore Confidence – notwithstanding the fact that Mayers was the Minister directly responsible for the police at the time of the unfortunate events which continue to haunt our country.
The Prime Minister then insults St. Lucia’s Ambassador to Washington by calling her a Party Hack with no qualifications for the job.
Mr. Chastanet’s vile characterization of the Ambassador is a continuation of his election campaign rhetoric and a clear indication that he is unaware that such language is unacceptable from a person now holding the portfolio of Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs.
If Mr. Chastanet would take time to review the file of the present Ambassador to Washington, which is now available to him, he would realize that she is fully qualified to hold her current position and maybe he would be inclined to cease his repeated verbal abuse of a competent Saint Lucian woman.
Further, the SLP contends that Mr. Chastanet’s contempt for the people and Constitution was further exemplified when he on Tuesday proceeded to Parliament and pointedly refused to appoint a Deputy Speaker of the House, a difficulty he has imposed on himself and the Parliament, by appointing every elected member of his Party to a Ministerial position, including Sarah Flood Beaubrun who was first elected Deputy Speaker, thereby creating the largest Cabinet ever in this country’s history.
The SLP believes that this is a case where he could easily temper his arrogance by learning from the example of Sir John Compton, one of the authors of our Constitution, who rescinded the appointment of Marcus Nicholas as a Minister in 2006 to ensure that as Prime Minister he upheld the Constitution.
As Parliament proceeded on Tuesday, Mr. Chastanet continued to display his lack of preparedness by demonstrating absolute cluelessness as to how the Prime Minister and Leader of Government business is to execute that responsibility.
Mr. Chastanet’s performance as Prime Minister so far has served only to illustrate his hastiness and poor judgement on several important issues in the execution of his duties as Prime Minister.