Opposition leader, Philip J. Pierre has declared that he was overwhelmed by the turnout Sunday for a Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP) organized protest march in Castries.
Pierre described the event as arguably the largest ever demonstration ever held in Saint Lucia.
“The government will understand that there are thousands of people who disagree with what they are doing and they are ready to demonstrate on the ground with their feet,” Pierre stated.
He described Sunday’s protest as a genuine march for this country’s hospitals and health care.
Last week, Pierre said the issues of inadequate health care, reckless fiscal mismanagement, increasing debt and general poor governance of the country now transcend party affiliation.
In a plea for support of the protest march, he had asserted that the country is bleeding and invited all Saint Lucians who care about their country and the future of their children to back the activity.
Peter Alexander, who joined the protest, said it was a reflection of how people feel about what is happening in their country.
“For the first time I have seen that we have cut across party lines. There are a number of people whom I knew before the elections were supporting the United Workers Party because they gave me a lot of beams and they are now in the march, so it tells you that people generally across the country are upset,” he remarked.
Sunday’s SLP protest has come against the backdrop of industrial action by Customs Officers, and notices of strike action issued to the St Lucia Electricity Services Limited and St Jude Hospital.
Alexander said he hopes there is a shut down of the country which is bleeding badly.
“It is bleeding badly and it has to stop,” he stated.
Lucian Peoples Movement (LPM) leader, Therold Prudent said he was ‘ecstatic’ about the protest and very pleased with the turnout.
“I believe it is sending a very strong message to this government that the time is very very short and that we are determined that this government must go and none of the nonsense in terms of privatisation of health, in terms of corruption, in terms of lack of accountability – all of these things we will throw them out, together with them when the time is right,” Prudent said.
He expressed the view that Sunday’s protest would become protracted and not be a mere one day event.
Prudent asserted that the protests would continue until the people get what they want – the removal of the Allen Chastanet administration from office.