Basseterre, St. Kitts, Thursday 4th July, 2013, -The Leader of the People’s Action Movement (PAM), Shawn Richards, has filed a second Motion of No Confidence (MONC) in the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis and Prime Minister, Dr. Denzil Douglas.
While the first motion has not yet been tabled in Parliament, after it was filed by the Leader of the Opposition, Mark Brantley, over six months ago, Hon Shawn Richards filed a new motion on Wednesday 3rd Jult, at 1:55pm.
Prime Minister Denzil Douglas has “dilly-dallied” with the MONC, saying that the Constitution does not give a date for it to be heard and has refused to expedite the matter in the Parliament, which led to the Opposition filing a case in the court charging that their constitutional rights have been violated. The Prime Minister has delayed further the tabling of the MONC by saying that he cannot bring it to the Parliament until the court matter has been heard on July 11-12 because it is now sub judice.
The refusal to table the MONC has led to increasing political tension in the country that has provoked thousands of persons to march against the Douglas-led administration in what they see as an undermining of democratic principles in St. Kitts and Nevis.
When asked why file a second MONC, the Leader of the PAM, Richards, said that one, it was to bring to the attention of the local, regional and internatioonal media that there are two MONC’s before the Government and secondly, that other developments have further led them to have no confidence in the Government such as the delaying of tabling the first MONC and the 43 million dollars of the SIDF funds that were put into Christophe Harbour.
The preamble of the newly filed MONC reads that “since the installation of the Rt. Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas as Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis and Leader of the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis our Federation has been governed in a manner which has undermined our Constitution, has led to disastrous economic outturns and a lack of public confidence in his leadership and in his government.”
Several reasons for the filing of the new MONC were given in the resolution.
These include that the Prime Minister has constantly and willfully disregarded the Constitution of the Country; that the Prime Minister has undermined the Ministerial system of Government as prescribed in the Constitution; that the Prime Minister has failed to consult the Country prior to the Land for Debt Swap Agreement with the St. Kitts-Nevis and Anguilla National Bank Ltd with the resultant sellout of our patrimony; and that the Prime Minister has refused to effect a decrease in electricity rates in St. Kitts with the result that household and commercial consumers find themselves unable to pay and some have had to return to early 20th century modes of lighting with lamps and candles
Other reaons include that the Prime Minister has refused to uphold a system of good governance thereby destroying the public service; that the Prime Minister has mismanaged the financial affairs of St. Kitts and Nevis thereby incurring a massive national debt with defaults on bond payments and the imposition of haircuts without regard to the consequences for bondholders and the Country’s financial image; that the Prime Minister has refused to have full ventilation with the Nation on the IMF conditions relative to the public debt; that the Prime Minister displays unruly parliamentary behavior and unruly extra parliamentary behavior even threatening to sell a fellow national; and that the Prime Minister has attempted to further increase the number of senators in parliament in the face of the IMF calls for a lessening of public expenditure.
And more reasons given are that the Prime Minister has instituted the SIDF as an alternative to the consolidated fund to receive moneys which constitutionally belong to the government and thereby insulating the foundation from parliamentary and audit scrutiny and oversight, and used as the Prime Minister’s Slush Fund;
It also states that the Prime Minister has caused countless millions of dollars from the SIDF to be invested and wasted in projects said to be owned by foreign investors, including Christophe Harbour and Kittitian Hill while local businesses continue to suffer and decline.
It states that the Prime Minister has failed to lend support to the people of Nevis thereby causing unnecessary default in their Treasury Bonds; that the Prime Minister has as Prime Minister and Minister of Elections publicly supported the previous Supervisor of Elections in defying the directive of the Electoral Commission with the result that hundreds of registered voters in Nevis were illegally removed from the Voters List in Nevis causing tremendous harm and damage to the reputation of the electoral system in St. Kitts and Nevis that the Prime Minister and his minority government are attempting to gerrymander the Electoral Boundaries in St. Kitts and Nevis in order to adversely affect the majority of Elected Representatives; and that the Prime Minister and his minority government continue to desperately hang on to power in spite of their rejection by the majority of Elected Representatives.