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Sun 27th Oct 2019

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From paradise to slum

Independence message of Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal BSc(hons), MSc, MBA,
Leader of SVG Green Party

From paradise to slum

According to Warrant Officer Ivan BSc (hons), MSc, MBA, Leader of SVG Green Party, in the 40 years since independence from the United Kingdom, SVG has plummeted from being a paradise to being a slum.

Many Vincentians living in the USA, Canada and England, who have returned to SVG on holiday, have told Warrant Officer Ivan Bertie O’Neal that they will not come back to live permanently in SVG, because the country is a mess. They are disappointed with how dirty and poor our once graceful country is now.

The environment is very bad and poverty and unemployment are very high. This is stoking serious crime and creating widespread destitution throughout the country. Kingstown has been turned in to a slum under the ULP regime.

When comparing SVG before independence to that of today, it is clear that we have lost SVG and that the government is lost. There is virtually no economy and the living environment in many parts of the country is literally a slum. Our country is getting much worse by the day.

The environmental conditions are the worst in living memory; violent crime and unemployment rates are very high and the worst in living memory; the desperation of many poorer households is the worst in living memory.

Warrant Officer Ivan Bertie O’Neal strongly contends that SVG is behind most of the rest of the world. The super-rich white migrants of Mustique & Canouan and Taiwan are our worst enemies.

When Singapore gained independence from the UK, their Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew smashed up the slums in Singapore, and built five universities and ten polytechnics - investing billions of dollars – to create a knowledge-based economy. Singapore focused on free, high-quality education from pre-school to university for every child, regardless of race and wealth level.

Now, Singapore is a global success storey, with one of the highest standards of living in the world. Singapore has the highest percentage of millionaire households as a share of a country's total households at 15.5%; Singapore topped the charts for highest GDP per capita in 2010 at close to EC$152,636 and is expected to continue to be the global leader until 2050; Singapore has a GDP of EC$810 billion; Singapore has a very low unemployment rate of 1.9%; more than 70% of Singapore resident non-students aged 25-34 have a university education.

In SVG we must call a spade a spade: we are the direct opposite to Singapore in SVG. SVG has poor-quality education and a focus on subordinate employment in white enclaves - cooking the food, serving the food, washing the plates, making up beds, cutting grass and being security guards.

The problem in SVG since independence is that we have had highly dotish governments that want to use tourism as the foundation of the SVG economy, rather than education.

For true independence, a Green government would abolish the discriminatory tax laws that punish our people. This would boost the economy, create thousands of new jobs, help SVG businesses to prosper and create the revenue needed to competently manage the socio-economic and financial affairs of our beloved country.

May God continue to bless SVG. Happy 40th anniversary.

Ivan O’Neal BSc (Hons), MSc, MBA

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