February 6, 2009
PMC: Support Argyle International Airport

The People’s Movement for Change (PMC) has called on the entire Vincentian community to lend critical and constructive support to the Argyle International airport.{{more}}

The PMC, in a release, said it holds firmly to the conviction that the airport project still has far to go in order for it to really be the national project that it ought to be, but declared that if the international airport is seen as a facility to stimulate, diversify, increase production and trade, as well as our global interaction, all nationals will find its intrinsic value and lend


According to the release, the PMC said the airport must not be seen simply as a platform to bring persons from abroad without the hassle of transit blues, or about giving praise to Castro, Chavez, the so called coalition of the willing or to glorify and thank Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves.

For the PMC, the Argyle airport has the potential to provide more hospitality opportunities, a new national and social geography, a seat at the international discussion on aircraft pollution and travel cost, as well as make our community busier and more cosmopolitan.

In total, the PMC believes that the completion of the Argyle airport amounts to a national economic, socio-cultural challenge. The airport challenges our Vincentian identity and culture, and opens the gate to a mass of foreign visitors who will test our mission. It said, this project compels us to band together creatively to make it work, pay for itself and realize its mission in our lives.

The PMC also noted that already, some of our homemaking and culture resources have been upset and are being unearthed by the project. It has costs that are more than financial or monetary. It must, therefore, bring gains that are more than speculatively financial.

The release said, because the stakes are so high, the PMC calls on our community to come on board in a constructive/critical way to support the airport project. The entire Vincentian community must ready itself to expand its output and opportunities, and at the same time bring its concerns and insights to bear, monitoring the project’s weaknesses, while enhancing its realizations, and thus owning as citizens, this new national asset.

In lending its support to the project, the PMC proposed that the New Democratic Party (NDP) consider:

1. Declaring a constructive/critical support for the project

2. Putting together its main criticisms on governance/transparency, and indebtedness into challenging and doable proposals.

3. Calling for and offering to fill place(s) on the directing board of the IADC.

4. Working with civic society for the formation of a body/association to anticipate challenges and opportunities and investments that our national community should consider taking up.

The PMC is also calling on the Green Party to take on board the would-be national project and perhaps lead us in analysing the Green implication of it.

According to the PMC, there is the danger that this airport project may be seen as “belonging” more to Taiwan, Cuba and Venezuela, than to us, citizens of SVG. “Even in these coming but tightening times, we must open a window through which Vincentians can contribute and own a share in our airport? What about 2 million shares at $20 each – no person able to own more than 500 shares…?” The PMC said.

“As the PMC takes our call for One People One Nation to the International Airport project, we acknowledge the ideas that citizens at home and abroad have shared with us, and we urge the administration under Prime Minister Gonsalves to move further to make the Argyle project a fully national one.”