Books about Anguilla


Thursday, 30 July 2009

Visionless Opposition

It was one of his most worrying tasks that on the early morning of July 23, Mr. Valdez Johnson - an unassuming, industrious, dignify young Anguillian - vents via his Facebook page:

“To the new politicians on the Block, we know all that this Government has
done in the past, the good, the bad, the ugly. Don’t want to hear that. Tell me
what plans you have for the future of Anguilla. To be honest if you can’t show
or tell me what you gonna do - I voting the same way....”

One of the vital aspects of parliamentary democracy is the provision of an Opposition which functions almost as a shadow or a government in waiting. Opposition parties are suppose to act firmly and alertly while dealing with sensitive issues and correcting the measures of the Government whenever the steps taken are detrimental to national interest.

Unfortunately, we have been facing an infirm Opposition.

The largest opposition party, the Anguilla Progressive Party (APP) – with the counselling from a leading Miscarriages of Justice and racist former Judge of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court - takes the pride in being the mainstream party of change for Anguilla. But the party has failed to impress the country that they are the custodians of a different and higher political morality. For this reason, the party is not able to provide a modicum of coherence in forming credible governance.

The Anguilla United Movement (AUM) under the late Hubert Benjamin Hughes is a disgrace to our (electorate) intelligence and Anguillians as a whole, and is nothing but an accident in waiting. This party is terminal; compounded with chronic Self Importance Syndrome and is detrimental to stability and prosperity - and must be jolted into this reality.

Whereas, the Anguilla Democratic Party (ADP) is simply a waste of time – spiteful and revengeful from a missed opportunity.

The opposition parties on Anguilla do not seem to have ideas, inspirations or individuals who can combine effectively to confront the Anguilla United Front (AUF) brand of democracy. They have almost subordinated their thinking and tactics to the AUF’s - more in the role of technocrats rather than novice or visionaries - with no principled stand over any issue.

They do not have an alternative policy regarding how to solve any nagging problems. There is no coherent alternative approach; instead it is wasting time simply to pounce on the government on matters of tactics alone. For example, it would have been perfectly legitimate for the Opposition to start a separate dialogue with the government on the Proceeds of Crime Bill, rather than involving the three ‘criminal associations’ (Christian Council Association, Financial Services Association and the Bar Association) to sanction. Or, how about a dialogue on effective legislations example, Planning Legislation, amendments to our Property and Land Legislations, Labour Laws including a National Minimum Wage Legislation, Consumer Protection Legislations, Police Legislation including new Traffic Legislations etc. Or even the recent economic “recovery to stability” talks with the government before going off to the United Kingdom?

The Oppositions do not have intellectual clarity and political maturity to tell the government that overall security of the country is intrinsically linked with good governance. A party in the opposition, which wants to persuade the electorate that it ought to be in a position of power, has the obligation to be pragmatistic; come up with real alternative policies, ideas and vision if they feel that the Government of Anguilla has a poor dismal record.

Real change is not about electing Parliamentarians to do the jobs of our Permanent Secretaries.

There are various issues on economic, social and other fronts where the Government does not have clarity of policies. Our Oppositions do not have the self-confidence to challenge the government on its all round failures. An opposition party that claims to be mainstream visionaries must not be devoid of new ideas or creative thinking. This is the Oppositions - simply waiting and watching as the government stumble from one mess to another. Sadly enough, they are contented to let the media play their role as Opposition.

It is imperative to realise that the Oppositions have a role and responsibility to steer our nation towards progress. The efficiency of a political party depends upon a healthy and balance mix of personalities and policies. There is no such balance coming from the opposition parties on Anguilla.

This ‘racist’ and ‘personality importance syndrome’ approach have debilitated the opposition parties on Anguilla from evolving an effective and coherent alternative to the ruling AUF’s Government. Though the party itself is battling on the back foot to cover up its failures, it is still the best choice to take Anguilla forward.

There are thousands of Valdez Johnsons on Anguilla. Our nation deserves better from our opposition parties.

1 comment:

  1. I love this one! The best ever, so far. Keep up the good works.


“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity” – MLK.