Eustace: I’m sick, tired of PM controlling House
December 22, 2006
Eustace: I’m sick, tired of PM controlling House

“I am sick and tired of this situation; the Prime Minister is controlling the House not the Speaker.”

Above were the angry words of Opposition leader, Arnhim Eustace last Friday after the second NDP Senator was thrown out of Parliament during the budget debate.{{more}}

As though perfectly synergized, Speaker of the House, Henerick Alexander gave Senator St Claire Leacock his marching orders during the Prime Minister’s closing address on Friday, while Senator Cummings was sent packing on the week before on December 6 during the debate on the Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure.

There was a major difference in how things panned out though. The opposition members kept their seats during Cummings’ 15-minute exchange with the Speaker which led to him being “named” and dismissed. But on Friday they all left, protesting the Speaker’s actions.

Prime Minister Dr Gonsalves was at the time speaking about the headways made by his Government in Education compared to what was accomplished by the NDP. Senator Leacock requested that the Prime Minister give way, which he did, and Leacock proceeded to defend NDP’s track record in education.

A quick objection by Prime Minister Gonsalves led to the Speaker asking Leacock to take his seat. Leacock insisted on “making my point” but the Speaker of the House dismissed him.

“It is unfair,” said Eustace. “The prime minister gave way, Senator Leacock should have been allowed to make his point,” Eustace stated, venting his frustration.

For 15 minutes after Leacock’s dismissal the NDP representatives stood outside Parliament demonstratively venting their feelings at what they believed to be a clear effort to frustrate their efforts and curtail their contribution to the due process.