Fri 18th Dec 2009

No Christmas bonus this year for public servants. Has the PM run out of funds?

Over the past few years, it has become customary for PM Gonsalves to grant a Christmas bonus to public servants. It is very noticeable that he has postponed the budget from December 2009 to January 2010 in order to escape paying a Christmas bonus. Has the SVG Treasury been drained by the PM or does he just not care about public servants?

After giving away over thirty million dollars to buy a YES vote in the referendum - in which Vincentians took all his bribes but still massacred him at the polls - perhaps he has learnt his lesson. Or, is this non payment of a Christmas bonus, a spiteful decision in retaliation for the gross embarrassment at the 56% NO vote slap he suffered.

His paltry excuse for not bringing a budget, which is traditionally tabled during the first week in December, shows up several things. He is grossly incompetent, lacks the ability to govern and there must have been a hidden agenda had he succeeded in gaining a YES vote. An alternative budget was probably prepared covering issues such as ALBA commitments and higher taxes.

Since taking office in 2001, PM Gonsalves has shown himself to be incapable of creating a single new revenue stream. It is unfortunate that in nine years, he and the ULP regime, have not demonstrated the business acumen of even a mauby shop owner, and increased revenue coming into the Treasury.

Instead, the PM is on public record as saying, that he finds it difficult to manage the SVG economy without grants. The sordid implication of this, is that he and his government, must rely heavily on begging and borrowing.

SVG's economy continues to sink quicky under the pressure of heavy public debt of over 1.3 billion dollars. That does not include the Argyle military airport expenses either. Ralph and the ULP regime do not possess the ability to build the strong and sustainable economy, so badly needed to create new employment for young people leaving schools and universities.

SVG Green Party has been very consistent in pointing out this fact to the nation. It has become even more apparent that under their incompetent leadership, the economy heads to an irreversible collapse.

Is it fair that public servants and the rest of the country suffer due to the lack of creative fiscal management skills on the part of the PM? Our public servants have grown accustomed to looking forward to their annual Christmas bonus. For the PM to leave them hanging, without even making a public statement on the matter, is unacceptable.

SVG Green Party expects the January budget to be the same monotonous, uncreative and unproductive rubbish, clustered with the usual ULP global begging bowl initiatives, minus the property tax increases.

Remember, the PM carried out a wide-scale property revaluation with the intention of massive increases in property taxes. Having lost the referendum, he is too scared to bring the massive property tax increases as he knows it would be political suicide. Another reason for the delayed budget!

If Vincentians return the ULP to office at the next general election, then the huge increases in property taxes and other taxes, would send us all begging for financial cover. Remember Green is prosperity.

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