Opposition leader Philip J. Pierre has criticised Prime Minister Allen Chastanet over comments the PM made recently about colonialism and economics.
And Pierre believes Chastanet owes Saint Lucians an apology.
“He says that economics has no conscience and even colonialism had a conscience,” Pierre recalled.
“You want to believe that colonialism had a conscience?” The opposition leader asked in disbelief during a virtual Town Hall meeting aired Tuesday on Choice Television.
He observed that it was the birthday of Malcolm X, the American Muslim minister and human rights activist who was born in 1925.
“What would Malcom X feel or what would Martin Luther King feel if they heard the Prime Minister of a country say that colonialism had a conscience?”
Pierre said the last time he checked what economics meant, it was defined as the branch of knowledge concerned with the production, consumption and transfer of wealth, of goods and services.
“That is about people,” the Castries East MP asserted.
“Economics is about people – economics is about improving the quality and the standard of living of the people of the country,” the Economist by profession explained.
“Economics, Mr. Prime Minister, does have a conscience,” Pierre declared.
“Have you heard about the welfare states? Have you heard about social safety nets? Have you heard about transfer of incomes? Have you heard about transfer of technology? Have you heard of stimulus projects? These, Mr. Prime Minister, are economics with a conscience,” Pierre stated.
He expressed the view that economics has a conscience.
According to Pierre, Prime Minister Chastanet should really apologise to the people of Saint Lucia for his comments about colonialism, a legacy that people are ashamed of.
“Even our colonial masters are ashamed of colonialism. That is why we are speaking about getting some level of support and help for people who were colonialised,” he observed.
Pierre, addressing Prime Minister Chastanet directly, said COVID-19 had exposed ‘the bluff’.
“It exposed the emptiness, it exposed all the problems that existed in Saint Lucia that you failed to do anything about, even after you inherited an economy where the debt to GDP ratio had been reduced, where there were surpluses on current accounts – an economy that had given you the springboard to move Saint Lucia in a new direction,” he stated.