The week that was
March 8, 2016

On one hand, former Speaker of the House of Assembly Monty Maule really shouldn’t have let himself be a part of the NDP’s sideshow event at Frenches House last week. As a well-respected elder statesman, Maule was clearly invited in an attempt to lend some legitimacy to the Opposition’s mock parliament, where representatives made outlandish statements without fear of rebuttal or clarification. However, once he showed up at the mock parliament, Maule was determined that Parl-iament should not be mocked.{{more}} He expressed his clear preference that the Opposition should actually show up and do their job in the House of Assembly, instead of holding two-day press events on the outskirts of the capital. He also admonished his hosts to refer to Ralph Gonsalves as “Prime Minister,” despite the NDP’s pending legal claims against the results of the General Elections. In other words, Maule’s presence may have signalled his ongoing support for the NDP, but his words rebuked the lunatic fringe of NDP supporters, who are holding party moderates hostage with their irrational actions. The party’s future success lies in the hands of sober people like Maule, and not in the ill-conceived hysterics of the Luzette/Arnhim wing of the party.


When is it good news for a home team to get a 46-0 drubbing on home soil? When that home team is the SVG men’s rugby squad, and when the annihilation takes place in front of hundreds of curious fans of the sport of rugby. According to the World Rankings, SVG is close to the worst nation playing rugby today, coming in 85th out of 100 countries. But our ranking is based on the newness of the sport in our region, and the precious few Vincies who even know the basic rules of the game, let alone count themselves as fans. For most of the people who turned up at Arnos Vale, it was the first time they’d witnessed a real, live, rugby match. With future games and tournaments scheduled to take place in SVG, we may soon see more of our strong, athletic youth taking up the sport. SVG is in no position to qualify for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan, but who knows what 2023 may bring?


This has been a historically bad week for crime in SVG. First two Lowmans men – Jomo ‘Boly’ Williams and Kevin ‘Red Man’ Warren – were found brutally murdered in Woods Mountain. Then, masked gunmen attacked some Germans holidaying on their yacht, killing one of them. A lesser, but still unsettling development is the epidemic of auto break-ins taking place across the Kingstown/Sion Hill area, where scores of car owners are now driving around with smashed windows and missing personal effects. Widespread murders and thefts are not the norm for local Vincy citizens, and certainly not the image we want to project to tourists. Something must be done. The PM likes to brag about how much he’s spent on police stations, equipment and new hires, but the crime problem seems to be growing. It’s time to start bragging about results, not expenditure.


After PM Gonsalves’ promises a few months ago that construction and economic activity were returning to Canouan after a lengthy dispute between investors, recently rehired workers must have been shocked to hear that close to 60 of them were being laid off. CCA Ltd, the main construction firm on the island, delivered the bad news last week to the workers, whose employment in Canouan is key to the fortunes of hundreds of Vincentians. CCA made no bones about the fact that they were laying off workers as a direct result of the continuing protest actions by Terry Bynoe and his supporters, who have been aggressively protesting developers’ plans to regulate the existing free access to beaches and anchorages. Whether CCA really needed to lay off so many workers or whether they are colluding with the developers to break the resolve of the protesters is an open question. But what should not be debatable is the importance of an amicable solution between protesters and developers, to make sure that everyone gets back to work ASAP.

If I had a question in SVG Parliament

…I would ask why the police didn’t maintain a consistent, 24×7 presence at the more popular yachting anchorages across SVG, like for example, Cumberland or Wallilabou Bay, where a German yachter was brutally murdered last week. Any hotel worth its salt has a few on-site security guards, and our yacht anchorages – which have more occupied beds than most hotels – deserve no less. The cost of a guard post at our popular bays is nothing compared to the lost tourism revenue that will now sail elsewhere as a result of this attack. A police outpost is not a guarantee of safety, but it would surely discourage this sort of heinous attack.

Media Watch

Xtreme 104.3FM celebrated one year on the air last week, and seems to be holding its own as the scrappy alternative to radio heavyweight Hot97. However, while Xtreme exudes class and professionalism, it hasn’t done much to develop its own identity or distinguish itself from its rival. And while it does everything well, it’s not clear which segment or time slot it’s dominating. Here’s hoping that the talent and quality at Xtreme will evolve into a signature style in 2016.