(SKNIS): Following an overwhelming victory in the Saint Lucia General Elections yesterday (06th June) by the Opposition United Workers Party (UWP), Leader of the Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP) and former Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony, has decided to quit as leader of his party, while UWP’s Allen Chastanet is to be sworn in today as Prime Minister.
Prime Minister of the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis, Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, is weighing in on the UWP’s massive win. In a congratulatory phone call to Prime Minister-designate Allen Chastanet, Prime Minister Harris conveyed his best wishes to the new leader, who is expected to form his imminent government.
In commenting on the leadership qualities of Prime Minister-designate Chastanet, Prime Minister Harris said that he finds him to be a man of principle and strong moral convictions when he spoke out against the injustice meted out by the Former Douglas-led Administration for holding in abeyance for 26 long unprecedented months a Motion of No Confidence that was filed by the then Dr. Harris-led Opposition Team Unity Alliance.
“When others in CARICOM remained silent, Mr. Chastanet had the moral fortitude to speak out and to call a spade a spade,” Prime Minister Harris said. “I thank him for the moral stance he took and I think it is a good sign that he possesses the qualities that good governance requires today.”
Prime Minister Harris was the featured speaker at the United Workers’ Party’s 50th Anniversary Gala that was held on Saturday, March 28th, 2015 at the Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa & Beach Resort under the theme “All that Glitters IS Gold.”
Meanwhile, Dr. Anthony’s decision to step down as leader of his party comes in the wake of the UWP’s 11 seat triumph over the SLP’s 6. The former Prime Minister of Saint Lucia congratulated Mr. Chastanet.
“On behalf of the Saint Lucia Labour Party and also on my personal behalf, I congratulate Mr. Allen Chastanet, Leader of the United Workers Party on his victory at the polls,” he said. “On all accounts, this was a convincing victory. It is clear there was a major national swing against the Saint Lucia Labour Party. I wish the people of Saint Lucia the very best as we embark on this new journey.”
“As to my future, I do not intend to serve as the Leader of the Opposition and indeed, Political Leader of the Saint Lucia Labour Party. I will, however, continue to serve my constituents of Vieux-Fort South and support my other Parliamentary colleagues in their various constituencies as they seek to protect the interests of their constituents,” the former prime minister added.
Dr. Anthony regained his Vieux Fort South Seat with 2,439 votes to his opponent Dr. Ulric Mondesir’s 2,199.
Mr. Chastanet, who engineered the swing away from the SLP, garnered some 2,495 votes to his opponent Labour’s Guibion Ferdinand 1,446 votes in Micoud South Constituency. Mr. Chastanet is an economist by training and a former tourism minister.
It is reported that the UWP’s win generated spontaneous celebrations in several communities with motorcades and widespread dancing in the streets, a sign that Saint Lucians wanted change.