COMMENTARY: St. Mary’s South Election Drama: A Lesson In The True Character of Politicians

Credit: Observer

By Yves R. Ephraim


I consider myself apolitical, in the sense that I have no allegiance to any of the existing political parties in Antigua and Barbuda.

I generally try very much to ignore the immature behaviour but in this instance I am forced to agree with a “speaker” who described the behaviour of some politicians as “political chicanery”.

Whereas I think that that “speaker’s” observation was correct, he however fell short by incorrectly and prejudicially ascribing that behaviour to the wrong politician in his particular reference.

In this season, we are being reminded of the setbacks to our national development as a result of the our history of slavery.

You would think that in this post emancipation era, that our black politicians would be passionately committed to the advancement of the descendants of the slaves of this country.

We have the OECD squeezing us from competing in the offshore banking industry and introducing NON-tariff barriers to keep our people from competing fairly with them.

They are still making it difficult for our people to have bank accounts and unfortunately our politicians are content to comply with their wishes so long as they do not lose their lives of comfort.

Regrettably what we have instead is a very pampered cadre of politicians who are not willing to teach the people how to fish but instead prefer to give the people a fish so that we, the descendants, would continuously return for handouts and largesse just like our forefathers’ did under Massa.

Creating such dependency makes these new “Massa” indispensable.

We, the descendants of slaves, are not aware that our dependency is what keeps some unproductive politicians in position of power, luxury and nepotism.

It is this power and the perks that these ruling politicians use for self-enrichment.

Most of these politicians if left to themselves could not achieve the good life they enjoy if they were not so close to power.

As I look around this country, there is evidence after evidence of the impoverishment of various, once-well-to-do communities, like Villa, Gambles, etc.

In contrast, we see the blindingly opulent life-style of the ruling politicians while many suffer.

As I look at the sheer child’s play going on in the St. Mary’s South constituency, we witnessed three resigning politicians, each for very interesting reasons:

1) One politician resigned so that no pecuniary benefit will be lost under the guise of family priority.

This politician wants to make sure that they continue to feed from the state’s troughs rather than sacrificially serve the people.

It is clear that is is not about the people but rather what the people can do for that politician.

This politician is afraid of what the people’s rejection would mean for their personal lifestyle.

2) A second politician resigned so that the WILL of the people would prevail, an honorable gesture in my opinion.

That politician knowingly put his own future at risk but was willing to subject himself to the people’s will.

3) A third politician resigned from his party and proved himself untrustworthy.

As someone who hold leadership roles, I would say that I would never trust a traitor and defector.

Today this defector and traitor would pretend that he is on my side then, when the price is right, he will stab me in the back.

A traitor will always be a traitor.

A leopard cannot change its spots. Remember Brutus and Julius Caesar?

It is amazing how you can really tell the character of a politician even in the way he resigns, ie whether it is genuine or it is “political chicanery”.








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  1. Just after reading this article I can hear Teacher Percy playing in the background.

  2. I wonder if this writer will say the same about Sean bird and bowen who was labour especially Sean bird who believes that antigua was willed to the bird’s family so that the bird dynasty could’ve continued good to say Antiguans rejected it. I am 46 and has been following politics since the age of 17 and most of those years the upp always say “no bird should be in politics” because of corruption and other wise, I remember when Mansore (upp) said in parliament to through the birds into the dustbin of history, and not a word came from the leader to distant himself from the statement or to reprimand mansore, and now this writer is saying that people shouldn’t trust someone who move from one political party to another and most people would think he is speaking about Mr. George. I love people but hate bias and stupid behaviors and this writer obviously needs to learn the history of this country to know who move from one party to another. All of them are the same however for me I believe an individual can make a difference in any political party once he has the people at heart.

    • Nothing wrong with switching sides thou….did sean bird receive money to go to the opposition party???? Was he a member of the ablp….gaston already said he na want none bird pan he ticket. What that guy did was not a good look….I understand him wanting to be a politician at any cost…. but

  3. Yves, like your friend and former co-worker Audley Phillip, your blue petticoat is showing just below your yellow skirt. Stop using loose words like “apolitical” since you’re clearly a UPP hack. Man up, you lily-livered laggard.

  4. I already hear ‘the dawg’ cussing the author of this piece at the next C.O.C. meeting.

    We shall see if the author colleagues have the ‘balls’ to tell ‘the dawg’ to go to hell the next time he (the dawg) attacks them…..

  5. So tell me, u get knuckle until the sane man that knuckle u, u put him as ur senator? See when u can’t stop them from your WIFE, U HAVE THEM JOIN U

    • Bowen resign from labour party and Sean bird also resign from labour party. Bowen was an elected MP on the ALP TICKET, Bowen actually challenged Lester about having asot so powerful in government and asot wasn’t even elected at the time.

  6. Let me also say when Gaston took over the labour party sean bird was one of the co founder of the true labour party but afterwards didn’t have any balls to stand up and defend his position so he ran and left his cousin vere bird with true labour party while he got a job in government from the same Gaston. Politics sweet that’s why me lub antigua and not party, again all a them a the same

  7. I don’t like to get into politics conversation but this move is to try and split the votes from one party to join the other party but let me put it this way as a man from the South living overseas we are very proud and when we believe in something we believe so nice try but not in the South

  8. I don’t see the comparison here between Bowen, Sean Bird and Dwayne George. What George did was pure treachery at the worst, in light of the fact that days before he was singing the praises of Shuggy. Every man has a right to decide his own destiny, but timing is key. George’s timing makes him a Judas.

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