Lewis demands Compton apology
March 18, 2005
Lewis demands Compton apology

The defeated party leader of St Lucia’s opposition United Workers Party has called for an apology from newly-elected party leader Sir John Compton.

During the party’s convention on March 13, Sir John made a dramatic entrance while Dr Vaughn Lewis was making the keynote speech and the ensuing commotion prevented Dr Lewis from properly completing his speech.{{more}}

Dr Lewis criticised Sir John’s behaviour and described the scene at Sunday’s convention as “disgusting”.

“I and many others were particularly concerned that Sir John chose – contrary to the rules of the convention – to enter the hall with a mob, obviously given instructions to give maximum disturbance to prevent delegates from hearing my speech,” he said.

“It is also a cause for concern that this was coordinated by certain delegations opposed to my nomination to the party’s political leadership and annoyed that I had refused to stand down from contesting the election.


“Further it became obvious that his behaviour was designed to intimidate my supporters and to stampede and frighten them into voting for Sir John or not voting at all.

“I believe that sir John owes an apology to the many party supporters whom he reduced to tears, demoralisation and disgust at Sunday’s convention.”

Dr Lewis said the newly-elected party leader needed to apologise to the entire nation, as the event was broadcast live on national television.

Seventy-nine-year-old Sir John founded the UWP more than 40 years ago, and served as St Lucia’s Prime Minister during which time he led St Lucia into independence.

He picked Dr Lewis as his successor when he retired from politics in 1996.

When Sir John announced his return to the political fray a few weeks ago, he said he was dissatisfied with Dr Lewis’ performance as political leader.