January 15, 2010

Prime Minister: ULP is the only government which can deliver this airport

As General Elections loom in St.Vincent and the Grenadines, the international airport at Argyle will be a deciding factor in the return or removal of the Unity Labour Party (ULP) administration, says Prime Minister Dr.Ralph Gonsalves.{{more}}

Already Gonsalves is making a case for his administration’s return by pointing out the importance in having his team lead the construction of the airport – the state’s largest capital project to date.

“They wouldn’t be able to get the help which I getting from Cuba from Fidel and Raul and from Chavez, because you can’t curse the man them daily like how the Opposition is doing and expect to get help from them,” said Gonsalves.

He added: “I know the ULP is the only government which can deliver this airport. So that’s a choice that people will have when the elections are called any time between now and March 28, 2011.

“If I may say parenthetically, under the Constitution which was defeated, I would have had to hold it between September and December. That is the only window I had, but now I could call it anytime because I tell them take the power away from me and they say ‘no’ they not taking it they ‘leaving’ me ‘with it’,” said the prime minister, adding, “Thank you very much, I will use it to the best of my ability”.

Giving an update on the work carried out at the airport site between August 13, 2008, and December 15, 2009, Gonsalves disclosed that 30 per cent of the total amount of earth works to be done has been completed.

He noted that during that same period, the team working on the project has used 461,755 US gallons of fuel as well as 125,650 cubic metres of explosives.

Meanwhile, work has started on the second kilometre of the project where construction of the terminal building will commence on July 1, 2010. This will be constructed by a firm from Taiwan.

Construction of the airport started on August 13, 2008. Prime Minister Gonsalves reminded Vincentians that the global recession, the most severe in 80 years, followed in mid-September that year.