NICE Radio to close?
October 26, 2012
NICE Radio to close?

As NICE Radio faces possible closure for money owed to Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves from a defamation judgment, manager Douglas De Freitas says the station has been a good steward.{{more}}

The court awarded Gonsalves $250,000 in damages because of comments broadcast on NICE Radio eight years ago.

The radio station was implicated in the lawsuit because of statements Elwardo “E.G.” Lynch, host of the New Democratic Party’s “New Times” programme, made about Gonsalves and financing for members of his family on a trip to Rome.

This week, lawyers for Gonsalves, BDS Co. Ltd, the station’s owner, and a financial institution with interest in the case, presented their various arguments in court about the appointment of a receiver.

De Freitas told SEARCHLIGHT on Wednesday that he could not comment on the legal proceedings.

But he said on his Wednesday morning show: “Only God knows” what would happen to the station.

“Whatever happens though, all I can say, that we have fought the good fight. My faith is in God Almighty, not man,” De Freitas further said after his “Breakfast With God” show.

“… I have told you all already, God gave me this radio station. It is not mine. It never was mine. He gave it to me as steward … and I said when he is ready, he will take it onto himself.

“… We’ve been in court all week and we are not sure what will happen. I have my presumption that the judge is not going to rule in our favour,” said De Freitas, who has been critical of the judicial system, saying it is not independent.

“But we still have legal battles to fight and we will fight them to the best of our ability,” he further told listeners.

He said since he could not speak about what was actually happening “… you will hear a lot of people say a lot of things.

“Whatever conclusions people come to is up to them. But I know one thing for sure, that we have done our best in defence of democracy and whatever people in St Vincent and the Grenadines get, they deserve, because that’s what they want…”

De Freitas, who has been openly critical of Gonsalves’ Unity Labour Party administration, said farmers “in the poorest part of the country continue to vote for an administration that has never looked after their interest.

“My God is good and mighty. And you know, sometimes he rattles your nest. You have to move on.

“… I leave it in the hands of Almighty God. I am a man of faith and God will make a way where there is no way. The people will just have to deal with the things that they allow to happen because they refuse to accept truth.”

De Freitas further said Vincentians will celebrate their nation’s 33rd anniversary of Independence tomorrow “without pride, without dignity.

“We are celebrating independence of lumber, cement, galvanise, and we are asking people to celebrate from the beggar maid, dependency syndrome. That’s independence?” he asked listeners to his programme. (