Today, Thursday 31st July 2014, the High Court ruled on the St. Kitts and Nevis Boundaries case, and my Government is very pleased with the ruling. Some had charged that that the Boundaries Commission and its Chairman were biased. The Court ruled, however, that there was, in fact, no such bias.
That is a good thing – for the integrity and impartiality of the Boundaries Commission has been affirmed. The same people had also claimed that the census data on which the Boundaries Commission based their recommended boundary changes should not have been used.
There again, the Court found that there was nothing wrong with the census data that was used by the Boundaries Commission. And that, too, is a good thing as it demonstrates the seriousness with which the Commission took its responsibilities to identify and use data that was reliable….data that could withstand the most rigorous scrutiny.
Indeed, my own performance, as the Minister of jurisdiction, was found to be beyond reproach.
The widely varying electoral constituencies in St. Kitts and Nevis absolutely must be corrected. The Constitution demands it, international election observers have urged it, and responsible Nationals agreed that this must be done.
The Boundaries Commission, as we all know, was comprised of both Government and Opposition representatives. Indeed, the Premier of Nevis, an Opposition member of the Boundaries Commission, signed the Commission’s recommended boundary changes.
The Commission made a special effort to consult and this the Court has noted. The Court felt however, that the Commission should have consulted further. This is an adjustment that will therefore be made.
With or without boundary changes, the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party will win the upcoming elections. The Opposition fought against the creation of equal boundaries in 2010 and they are fighting against the creation of equal boundaries again in 2014.
My Government is simply attempting to respect the dictates of the Constitution. Because whether on the new boundaries or the old, the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party, with the people of St. Kitts and Nevis, will once again be victorious when elections are called.