Monday, April 22, 2024

Grenada: Opposition leader issues warning


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By Rawle Titus ST.GEORGE’S, Grenada, Aug 31, CMC – Opposition Leader Dr. Keith Mitchell says the Tillman Thomas administration will stage a coup against the Grenadian electorate if it attempts to prorogue parliament ahead of a debate on a motion of no confidence in the government.
Mitchell was reacting to unconfirmed reports that Prime Minister Thomas, who is facing his second motion of no confidence within a three month period, is considering several options including proroguing parliament as he seeks to save his embattled National Democratic Congress (NDC) government.
The latest motion against the prime minister has been filed by Karl Hood, a former foreign affairs minister, who resigned from the government earlier this year.
Thomas had survived the first motion filed by Mitchell in May by an 8-5 margin and political observers and commentators say he faces an uphill task in keeping his government together ahead of the July 2013 constitutional deadline for the next general election.
Mitchell, who had been in the United States for the past month, told reporters that he expects the Parliament to meet shortly.
 “For it (government) to attempt to prorogue parliament after a motion like this against the leadership of the country has been in will be a revolution or a coup against the people of the country” said Mitchell, whose New National Party (NNP) was booted out of office in 2008 after 13 consecutive years in power.
 “We have to describe it as such so those who preach democracy integrity transparency would have a great difficulty defending any attempt to prorogue the parliament and refuse the people to have a voice”.
Parliament has been on recess since July and no date has yet been fixed for its re-opening.
Prime Minister Thomas is reported to have held closed door meetings with senior NDC officials in the past few days triggering speculation here that he is contemplating strategies to avoid a parliamentary session.
But Mitchell said that the parliament is “alive because we just had a recess”, adding “the government has to find it very difficult not to recognize any serious motion that has enormous implications for the future of the country in that session”.
In an address to the nation earlier this week Prime Minister Thomas blamed the NNP for conspiring with Hood to file the motion, a claim the opposition party has already dismissed even as Mitchell told a party rally in New York that he anticipates Grenadians will vote for a new government before year end.
“The opposition is an alternative government. Its job is to try to get into government. It is not something that we came up with .But you don’t do it at all cost and this opposition has never done so.
“So for anyone to imply because I said that they would be an election that means I was in collusion in effect what the Prime Minister is saying is that I have influenced his other members to turn against him which is rather ridiculous.
“ It is an insult to the members of his own team and he is in fact giving me credit far more than I deserve,” Mitchell added.


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