In my last letter, under the heading “Same old UPP playbook with a twist from Chair Isaacs”, I indicated that in a follow-up letter I would endeavour to enumerate some of the outstanding accomplishments of the incumbent government, under Prime Minister Gaston Browne, notwithstanding 2 years of the Covid pandemic and the lockdown of the country with the attending serious economic and financial repercussions.
However, as a person with a knowledge of political history in Antigua and the Region, and observing the present campaign of the main opposition party, and realizing the weakness of the UPP as a political force; its many and varied errors; its lack of effective leadership; a political campaign that is incoherent and based mainly on populism, I have decided to continue to draw these negatives to the attention of the voting public, but more particularly to the independent voters, who decide the winner in a general election.
The reasons are abundant as they are varied and consequently there will need to be 2 parts to this letter, with your publication’s cooperation.
The truth is that the UPP has steadily lost political support in every election from 2004 to 2014. For example, in 2004 the UPP won with 21,892 votes at 55.50% while the ALP polled 16,544 at 41.94%. By 2014 the ALP won with a popular vote of 24,238 at 56.64% while the UPP polled 17,868 at 41.76%
In the 2018 general elections, the ABLP won with a total of 23,063 votes at 59.39% to the UPP’s 14,440 at 37.19%. In a reduced poll ABLP declined 1,149 votes while the UPP’s popular vote plummeted from 17,994 to 14,440 a whopping loss of 3,554 votes.
The above statistical data clearly indicates that between the election cycles 2004 to 2018 the UPP’s percentage vote has diminished from 55.50% to 37.19% while the ALP/ABLP has increased from 41.94% to 59.39% in the 2018 election.
GENERAL ELECTIONS 2014
While the UPP narrowly held on to power in the 2009 elections, it was clear to the discerning political observers that the UPP government had lost its way and was losing support of the independent and swing voters as well as the support of some labour supporters who had been turned off of the Lester Bird administration.
Halfway through its second term, Antigua was affected by what the UPP loosely referred to as ‘the world crisis”, and which obviously affected the Antiguan economy. What was evident however, was that the UPP government seemed unable, unwilling and incapable of devising policies to stabilize the economy.
The government ministers, activists and grassroot supporters would all echo the same excuse “is a world crisis we in, what you expect us to do”? They appeared helpless and inept and certain ministers and the party hierarchy appeared not only inefficient, but corrupt.
Added to that, Harold Lovell as Minister of Finance was a monumental disaster and the party, in desperation, devised a policy of giving away some of the government’s most valuable assets, e.g. the airport, the seaport and State Insurance amongst others.
The UPP government had become a ship with neither captain nor rudder.
Finally, the UPP turned on its own like an animal devouring its young. Members such as Leon (Chaku) Symister and others became the voices of the government and the party and would castigate and abuse all and sundry whom they thought opposed the government, including those party supporters who offered valid criticism.
These rabid barking dogs also turned their angst on those Caribbean brothers and sisters who had made their home here and were contributing significantly to the economy of Antigua and Barbuda.
All of this, oblivious to the fact, that these citizens comprised approximately 26% of the electorate.
And so, in the fourth year of its second term, it was obvious to the discerning that the UPP government was heading to defeat in the 2014 election, and the fact that the Prime Minister called the election in extra time (12 June,2014), all the while making clownish jokes, as to whether the election date was in his back pocket, side pocket or shirt pocket, added to the anger and frustration of the voters.
In Part 2, I shall give my opinion on the performance of the UPP in opposition from 2014 and 2018 elections and up to the present.
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Nomad, it is obvious that you are a labour supporter. Antiguans are concerned with the abuse and stealing of the countries resources. The self enrichment of the labour ministers. Their involvement in every aspect of the economy of Antigua. Their denial of the opportunity for ordinary Antiguans to succeed in business. They have the biggest farms, the are into poultry farming. There was a gentleman producing honey. The government put him out of business and gave the industry to a Browne. The Beach at long bay that Antiguans enjoyed is now under the control of a hotelier and his partner. Egg producers tried to bring in a machine to make egg cartons and the people In charge decided that ordinary Antiguans shouldn’t benefit and want to give the equipment to some labour minister or contact.
Antiguans have become poorer under the labour government. Whereas a few years ago ordinary Antiguans had businesses, including supermarkets and hardware stores, where are these businesses today. Antiguans have been reduced to begging the politicians and waiting on hand outs from the prime minister in pointe and Villa.
Sensible Antiguans are fed up with only one set of Antiguans getting rich, including politicians and their families and the plundering of the country’s resource to do do.
We need to get rid of Birdism once and for all so Antiguans can take back their country. If Harold is the one to do it, so be it. People should vote for anyone other than the Labour Party as they like Antiguans poor so they can bribe them with handouts.
And when it is election time, they bribe all the non nationals they allow in the country illegally with amnesty, to vote for them.
I can see this letter hit you where it hurts. UPP doomed. UPP FINISHED / DONE.
If Antiguans foolish enough to vote the Labour Party back in office, them, their lands and Antigua done. They will be left with nothing and be second class citizens in Antigua.
Well said @ Jackie, I agree with everything that you
have mentioned … 👏
This is an EXCELLENT analysis of the elections
UPP is DEFINITELY a failure and would be out of office next ELECTION. UPP Candidates are BUNCH of you know what !!!!
UPP is DEPENDING on KNIGHT and VOICE OF THE PEOPLE. These two shows speak to the same ORDINANCES every day. They are known as SERIAL CALLERS. They DO NOT add anything to the UPP. They are more of a SUBTRACTION. UPP FINISHED / DONE
Is that the name that you are using today.
These are your other names:
Does anybody else find it strange that that ERIC CARSDEN AND JAIMESON use the SAME EXPRESSIONS.
This is because eric carsden is jaimeson p
Oh come on now NOMAD (aka Fitzroy), you are an out and out political activist for the ABLP.
Or even maybe – just maybe – you are higher up in the chain of command and using a couple of aliases?!
Your original letters started out by you making out that you were AVOWED and APOLITICAL, with no allegiance to any particular party – WHO ARE YOU REALLY?
This letter is so on point.
BRIXTONIAN stop drinking the BLUE KOOLAID. It messed up your BRAIN. BRIXTONIAN you sounded VERY RETARDED
how many other names are you going to use under this article?
who the hell are you trying to fool
Is PETE an Antiguan name? Sounds Caucasian to me … NUFF SAID!
NOMAD, who really cares about your opinion.
Do you care about the people who lost their houses in Point because there was no water?
Do you care about the Clare Vue workers who had many grievances that they had to go on strike?
Do you care about the Solid Waste workers who had to go on strike for their back pay?
Do you care about the quarry workers?
Do you care about the workers at the Fiennes ?
Do you care about the Jolly Beach workers?
Do you care about the LIAT workers?
Do you care about the pensioners?
I don’t think that you do!
While you are trying to throw stones at the UPP, you have forgotten to feel the pain of people who are suffering.
But, I am not surprised because you are in Gaston’s inner circle so you get the benefits that the people don’t get.
I am not surprised because you support the ABLP- A party that works against workers
It is a shame that your heart is so hard.
Blessings Nomad/ Blessings Fitzroy!
The UPP has not changed its “strategy” since the last 2 elections. They keep on deluding themselves and fail to do any I-N-T-R-O-S-P-E-C-T-I-O-N
blame external factors for losing, but too pompous and self-righteous to humble themselves and ponder “where did we go wrong? How can we change it?”
The 🐍 with 26 ACRES of FARMing FOOL land is supposedly the Shadow Minister of Agriculture. Can’t do shit with the farm land except keep it NARSEE, DUTTY AND WUTLISS FULL A RUBBISH AND HIGH GRADE WILD TAMBRAN.
SHERFIELD BOWEN SHOT TESSA BARTHLEY and is the Shadow Minister of Legal Affairs.
FUNNY YOU SHOULD BE WORRIED ABOUT THE SHADOW MINISTER OF LEGAL AFFAIRS.
ARE YOU WORRIED ABOUT ALL THE MONIES THE CURRENT ONE STOLE FROM HIS CLIENTS, THE FORGERY OF SIGNATURES? IF HE CAN HOLD THIS POSITION, ANYONE ELSE CAN.
HE HAS BROUGHT THE JUDICIARY INTO TOTAL DISREPUTE
FITZROY, could you give me your take on the ASOT / GASTON situation. Perhaps you could write a letter on this.
Letter writer,you are not NOMAD. However,you are freaking MAD-NO.
The current administration is the worst yet in Antigua and Barbuda. Even the mangoes acting funny, one side ripe and the other side green. The freshly bought vegetables rots in the cold fridge after a few days.
Blame the above on covid and the war in Ukraine…
Tessa Bsrthley yes she was shot and killed by accident no malice. It was proven in the court of law. What happened that evening how she got their what took place at Parliament prior to the incident. There was a motion of no confidence agains the Prime Minister do you remember. He was told to step down until the investigation was completed. Who table the bill was it Sherfield was he threatened if he comes out at the back he would be punch he was called a pig squeak he was doing his job as a parliamentarlan. Plans was put in place to embarrass Bowen please ask the chief information officer, Sherry the news reader and Tonio the cameraman. Ask the information officer and Sherry if they were Park on Tanner Street the night of the incident. It went wrong what should have been an incident of shame publicize by the media turned out to be tragic causing the death of Tessa. Ask the chief information officer if he was not park on Tanner Street in a black Ralf four jeep. Are you now haunted by Tessa you are the instigator
Like 2004 Antiguans will vote for anyone to get relief from the heartless leader – even if it is Jiggy-poopoo!
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