January 29, 2010

PMC warns party leaders

The People’s Movement for Change (PMC) has called on the leaders of both the Unity Labour Party (ULP) and the New Democratic Party (NDP) to exercise more control over its supporters.

This is in direct response to what the PMC has described as “dangerous rhetoric and action displayed” outside the House of Assembly last Tuesday, January 19 when supporters of the NDP were granted permission to stage a protest, and a potentially serious confrontation between supporters of both sides was averted.

Earlier this week, supporters of both parties again converged outside the House to show solidarity support to their respective leaders, an act the PMC is calling “irresponsible.”

According to Marlon Stephenson, committee member of the PMC, the staged action could have easily escalated into something violent, despite the heavy police presence.

In a press release issued by the PMC Monday, it stated: “While we believe our democracy is strong enough to accommodate multiple demonstrations, we declare that the onus is on those staging the counter demonstration to warn their members against activities and actions that may provoke tension or violence.”{{more}}

Members of the PMC said that they will be following up on plans made last year to engage civil society groups in discussions in an attempt to minimize the potential for confrontations, political violence and victimization.

“We want to say to the Vincentian public that we are coming out of a referendum and a lot of people are feeling pain – part of it has to do with the way we manage our affairs and we want to engage communities to look beyond political party,” Ronnie Daniel, steering committee member of the PMC said.