PM says he will ‘sweat’ NDP over election date
August 21, 2015
PM says he will ‘sweat’ NDP over election date

“If they believe that I going give them a long time, like how Kamla give Rowley long time down there… I ain’t doing that, short!”

This was the assertion of the Prime Minister last Sunday, insisting that he intends to make the Leader of the Opposition Arnhim Eustace and other members of{{more}} the New Democratic Party (NDP) “sweat” over the announcement of the date of the next general elections.

Addressing a rally of the Unity Labour Party (ULP) at Rabacca, Dr Ralph Gonsalves said: “As every farmer knows, it ain’t long rope does kill cattle… the short rope does hang cattle, and I going give them a short rope!”

Gonsalves noted that in recent times, the NDP and its supporters have been making increased calls for him to declare the date of general elections, but said that he will not be rushed into making that announcement before he sees fit – as outlined by the constitution.

“I hear they talking about election date… In the independence constitution, the constitution gives the Prime Minister the authority to advise the Governor General to dissolve Parliament,” he emphasized.

“The constitution didn’t say the Cabinet, you know! The constitution didn’t say Eustace, the constitution didn’t say Ramos, the constitution didn’t say Shelly Clarke… it says the Prime Minister!”

Gonsalves further pointed out that when he proposed constitutional reform in 2009, included in it was the setting of a “fixed date within a three-month period” for general elections – something that the NDP opposed.

Promising his audience that the date for elections will be announced “not too long from now”, he added: “I am going to bun them… meaning get them tired. I will get them to talk more foolishness – more foolish than what Eustace, Cummings, Leacock and Friday talking at the moment, because they don’t know how to take pressure.”

Additionally, Gonsalves said since he assumed leadership of the ULP in 1998, the NDP has done nothing but “attack” him.

“But you attack me, and I beat you in 2001. You attack me personal and I beat you in 2005. You say all kinda things about me… and I beat you in 2010… But I tell you, you could lick me up, you could beat me up… I’m a hard man fuh dead!”

Making mention of his 47 years involvement in Vincentian politics, the ULP political leader emphasized that that time was spent in “struggle of politics on behalf of the poor and working people and the nation and the region.”

“I tell you I going enjoy this election campaign, you know. It’s the last one I’m having as party leader… I want you to give the comrade this last one.” (JSV)