Fri 31st Oct 2008
Over 100 people from a wide cross-section of society who came out of Victoria Park on Monday 27th October 2008, told the Leader of SVG Green Party, Ivan O'Neal that PM Gonsalves Independence Address was the worst ever. The high point of Gonsalves address was that 3 million dollars will be available for road cleaning work for the poor to have food on their plate at Christmas.
What Gonsalves fails to understand is that people need a job for life, not just for Christmas. People need food on their plate every day of the year, not just at Christmas. You can't raise children and pay bills for 52 weeks of the year with money earned from a low waged, 2 week job at Christmas. This arrogant mentality of giving poor people jobs for 2 weeks at Christmas and depriving them of a job for the rest of the year insults the poor.
It was noticeable in this dreadful independence address that there was no mention of the Argyle airport and the cross country road. These are Gonsalves two projects, but it seems that they are so much in doubt that he daren't mention them. Now that oil prices have dropped sharply, Iran and Venezuela will have substantially less cash and probably be unable to fund the unmentionable Argyle military airport. Long-term, there seems to be no future for the airport or the cross country road.
The startling thing about Gonsalves' address was that it highlighted what the whole country already knew Gonsalves has no ideas to stimulate the economy. This is worrying news for business and people alike. With our economy in crisis - large trade deficit, spiralling high cost of living and rising unemployment - what we need is a thinking leader that can boost the economy. Gonsalves, though, has no idea how to help the private business sector and no idea how to create thousands of secure, long-term jobs.
It is jobs that people are crying out for, well-paid jobs. This will only come when we have a thriving business sector and a strong economy. There was nothing in Gonsalves' address that gives any hope to the nation. It seemed to be the same old empty statements that have no substance. There's no clear indication on how the economy will be improved, no indication of how he will create thousands of long-term jobs and no indication of how families will overcome the ever-increasing prices and bills.
The weak economy has created a society of crime. SVG has one of the worst crime rates worldwide. Many people are concerned about the plague of crime and feel afraid to leave their home. Gonsalves' weak leadership and economic incompetence has created the weak economy, VAT and most of the other problems worrying the people of SVG.
For true independence, SVG must look to a Green government to provide what Gonsalves cannot. We have to create jobs and revenue to properly manage the affairs of SVG. With strong leadership and economic intelligence, a Green government will build a strong and sustainable economy. This will reinvigorate the business sector and create thousands of meaningful, well-paid jobs, thus providing you with financial independence and the freedom to pursue and achieve your needs.