LETTER: Non-nationals bamboozled again


“Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me!  I don’t know when my people will learn that the word of this Labour Party administration cannot be trusted.”  Those were the words of a frustrated CARICOM brother.

Just before the  January 18 election, the United Progressive Party announced that under its “One Caribbean” Act,  effective March 1, 2023,  a UPP Administration would  waive all work-permit fees for nationals of CARICOM and the Dominican Republic who have been resident  and working in Antigua and Barbuda on or before January 1, 2023.

True to the ABLP Administration copy-cat, cheating form, they announced that they would waive the work-permit fees from January 1, 2023.

Now, after having  “bought” the government in the recent elections, and with a slim one-seat majority, they are saying that the implementation will be delayed – for all kinds of spurious reasons.

This is the same administration that doubled the work-permit fees and all other associated work-permit costs shortly after they came into office in 2018.

What was a source of frustration for him, the CARICOM brother said,  was that “ many of them sold their votes for a few dollars. So Labour Party can now treat them anyway they choose, and make them continue to pay the high work-permit fees –  which is much more than what they were paid for their vote –  when they could have had the fees waived with a UPP government. Bamboozled again…but it look like they like it so.”     

If this government was serious about the implementation being January 1, 2023, as they announced, they would have done what was necessary to work out the mechanics, so that they could actually do so.

This was just another case of hornswoggling the people. I know this might be difficult for this administration to do, but I am calling on them to keep their word for once, and implement the waiver of the work-permit fees NOW,  without further delay!

– Letter by Pearl Quinn-Williams

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  1. At the risk of sounding uncaring, those who sold their cards or took money not to vote, deserve what they get. I have no sympathy for you. You were brought here to undermine native Antiguans and Barbudans and mess with our elections. How the hell can you trust a pathological liar like Gaston Browne for a few trinkets? I am saddened for my native country.

  2. Why would any political party waive the fees? Let them apply….that’s how they can keep a check to make sure that Antiguans are giving first preference to the position. The higher the cost, the more the deterrent to hire a non national. Pay a fair and decent wage and you will attract more nationals.

    Any party who promised that was just looking to score political points. UPP and ABLP both did it. UPP you also promised more reliable water knowing fully well that you can’t. You would’ve started off on the wrong foot.

    You guys did well last election. Now that Harold has resigned you will win the next one IF you keep up the momentum.

  3. In the heat of elections, political parties like to make promises to entice certain category of voters . An election promise or a campaign promise is a promise or guarantee made to the public by a candidate or political party that is trying to win an election. Talk is cheap and instead of a promise, the government should have made a proposal. When a promise is made, voters expect it to be binding. Political parties that make promises lack policies. Many times the promises are unrealistic and problematic to implement. Herein lies the crux of the problem.

  4. Totally agree with you Pearl, and I would go further.

    Gaston Browne knew he’d lost the autochthonous and indigenous vote, because we’ve lived through (as well as our dear department relatives) the lies, broken promises and manifestos that were rarely adhered to.

    So our duplicitous Prime Minister had to come up with a plan B that involved using non-nationals, illegals and paying the flights for passport holding Antiguans. Despicable!

    The AUTOCHTHONOUS must hold him accountable over time, or if not by the next by-election … if he’s still in office.

    • “… This was just another case of HORNSWOGGLING the people”

      Ms Pearl Quinn-Williams, I like your style 👍

  5. I tend to disagree with those who think that UPP was just making promises to score points with the voters. Their track record has proven that, and there should be no doubt in anyone’s mind. Except the Laborites, of course. Measures were being taken to put things in place to solve the water issue and I honestly don’t think it is impossible as someone has purported. ALP, with nearly 11 billion, just in tax revenue, had no desire to do anything to improve life in Antigua and Barbuda for anyone but themselves and their cronies. The management of APUA water division should be fired. All of them. The downfall with ALP is the lack of will and no real planning.

  6. This cannot be true. Just cannot be true . It was in ABS news . The ABLP Administration cannot so blatantly do something like this to CARICUM nationals. They are not that stupid.

  7. As a Caribbean national, at the top of my voice, I shout: AH GOOD FUH DEM’. Any government should and must care for the welfare of it’s indegeneous people fist. You come to live in a country, take time to feel the pulse of the people.Many of you know full well that your behavior during the election season would not have been tolerated in your own country, yet some of you were there, making enemies with natural born Antiguans, in dem own country – such forwardness. Baaaaapp!

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