By Caribbean News Global contributor
BASSETERRE, St Kitts – Following consultations with nationals in the UK and Toronto last month by the leadership of the St Kitts-Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP), Miami is scheduled to host the NextGen SKNLP leaders meeting on Saturday, November 9, 2019, and New York on Sunday 10, November 2019.
In an effort to rescue St Kitts and Nevis from the clutches of a failed Timothy Harris-led coalition, the SKNLP leadership has been listening to the views and concerns of nationals at home and abroad.
Deputy political leader and parliamentary representative, Marcella Liburd will lead the party officials at the meeting in Miami at St Kevin’s Episcopal Church Hall, 3280 NW 135th Street, Opa Loca, 33054, Florida. The meeting begins at 6 p.m.
The SKNLP chairman and candidate for St Christopher 8, Dr Terrance Drew; Dr Geoffrey Hanley, candidate for St Christopher 1; His Excellency Steve Wrensford, candidate for St Christopher 4 and His Excellency Kenny Douglas, candidate for St Christopher 5 will hear the views of nationals.
In New York, the meeting will be held at the Nativity Ballroom, 3061 Bainbridge Ave, Bronx, NY 10467 starting at 6 p.m.
Of major concern is the expressed plans by prime minister Dr Timothy Harris to disenfranchise citizens who are registered to vote and whose names are on the voters’ list by removing their names and introducing a residency requirement to go back on the voters’ list for the next general elections due within a few months.
Dr Harris had denied he planned to disenfranchise nationals of St Kitts and Nevis during an interview with Nevisian Everton “Obi” Elliott earlier this year.
Nationals in London, Birmingham and Ontario have expressed concern about developments including widespread corruption and nepotism, the high cost of living, rising unemployment, rampant corruption, a slowing economy, significant reduction in agricultural produce, the non-accountability of the government and other failures in almost all important sectors of the St Kitts and Nevis economy.
Consultations are also being planned for Tortola in the British Virgin Islands and St Thomas and St Croix in the United States Virgin Islands and dates are to be announced soon.
While the growth rate for St Kitts and Nevis was 0.9 percent in 2017, it was 1.4 percent for Belize, 4.4 percent for Grenada, 3.1 percent for Antigua and Barbuda, 2.6 percent for Saint Lucia and 0.7 percent for St Vincent and the Grenadines in 2017.
In September last year, Dr Harris blocked the International Monetary Fund (IMF) from publishing the 2018 Article IV Consultation on St Kitts and Nevis economy and last September barred the IMF Mission from undertaking a similar exercise on the economy for 2019.
“Given the current state of the St Kitts-Nevis economy, it is critically important that as a government in waiting, the St Kitts-Nevis labour party create a blueprint to fast-track the social and economic revitalization of our country once the dust of the elections would have settled”, said Dr Denzil L Douglas. “We continue to work and have secured key commitments from overseas investors that will redound to the creation of 3,000 new jobs, construction of a major hotel, a hospitality training school and improved healthcare for all citizens.”