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Fri 6th Feb 2009

Gonsalves' attack on public servants was below the belt

They say 'a bad carpenter always blames his tools'. Gonsalves' 2006 budget overshot by 64 million dollars and since 2001 all his budgets have overshot. Gonsalves has never achieved a balanced budget and always overspends his budgets. And now, strangely, 'carpenter' Gonsalves has the gall to accuse his tools, public servants and members of his Cabinet, of not paying attention to budget estimates!

At a recent workshop for top public servants in Kingstown, PM Gonsalves attacked public servants for not paying attention to budget details. He gave the impression that their actions undermine his government's weak fiscal policies. SVG Green Party sees Dr. Gonsalves' attack on public servants as punching below the belt. He is passing the buck of his inadequate governance on to public servants.

Gonsalves should look inward. He should know that standard procedures exist for dealing with such matters. Highlighting apparent flaws of top civil servants at a workshop and in plain view of the media is certainly not one of them. He has once again lowered the prestige of the Office of Prime Minister in SVG. That is the last straw that broke the camel's back.

The entire ULP regime is a square peg in a round hole. Gonsalves has now echoed that fact. The truth of the matter is that the ULP regime is frustrated because they cannot deliver.

There is clearly no ULP master plan to move the economy or the country forward. Every year Gonsalves brings in a new budget. Yet every year more jobs are lost and more businesses go bust. Gonsalves lack ability in dealing with economics and finance and the statistics show that the SVG economy is still in free fall.

Agriculture is dying and unemployment is rising. There is so much poverty that each year Gonsalves has to increase the number of persons on the poor relief program. All he can offer the young people is temporary work every December. The government's lifeline is borrowing from the NIS, the NCB and some degrading handouts from Taiwan.

SVG Green Party wishes to reiterate our condemnation of Gonsalves' blaming the public servants for the inherent weaknesses of the ULP regime's lack of innovation and lack of economic intelligence. The lack of clapping and welcome for PM Gonsalves at functions shows that the long honey moon is over for the ULP regime governance.

Job creation is the priority of a Green government. An SVG Green Party government will revitalise the economy and bring jobs for the unemployed. Green economics will rekindle the hopes of the nation and bring financial security to people and their families. SVG Green Party is at the forefront of economic solutions and a Green government will provide long-term jobs.

We saw in Obama's Presidential inaugural speech that Green economics is at the centre of his economic recovery plan. SVG's next election presents a similar economic opportunity for all Vincentians. Under PM Gonsalves people are losing jobs and the country is getting poorer. But as a nation we must succeed. This means we need a Green government because people must get jobs.

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