February 11, 2014
Deputy Consul General may have tarnished country’s name – Eustace

The government ought to be careful with whom they appoint to diplomatic posts, the Leader of the Opposition, Arnhim Eustace, has said.{{more}}

Responding to a release from the government that Edson Augustus had been officially recalled from his post as Deputy Consul General at the Consulate General of St Vincent and the Grenadines in New York, Eustace said that the image and reputation of the country could potentially be tarnished as well.

“Our image as a nation is also a function of how people in that capacity operate in the country to which they are assigned and because of what I know, I am ashamed of what has happened, and embarrassed,” the Leader of the Opposition said on the New Times radio program yesterday.

“It is a disgrace to our interest, and I am talking not only to the government of the United States, but to the people of the United States – what their perceptions are of Vincentians as a people,” he continued.

Eustace said he had information on what had transpired and that based on that information, the incident had the potential to make things difficult for Vincentians travelling to the US.

“Especially when any embassy official at that level gets involved in activities not consistent with his duties.”

Eustace said that the incident was made more serious as it came not long after the Canadian government announced that Vincentians now required a visa to travel to that country.

“This is a very serious matter and the Government has to come clearer right now and say what he has done.

“They have to come clearer right now as it is not in the best interest of the people of St Vincent and the Grenadines, both in the diaspora and those who wish to go to the US,” the Leader of the Opposition said.

According to the Government’s release, Augustus was officially recalled from his post after the Ministry of Foreign Affairs received reports that he was involved in activities outside the scope of his employment and inimical to the interests of the Consulate General and the Government and people of St Vincent and the Grenadines.

The release indicated that having received confirmation of the reports, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs acted promptly in recalling Augustus with immediate effect. (DD)