COMMENTARY: What Makes A Good Opposition Leader?  The Opposition’s Choice  To Lead Is Critical.

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by Audley Phillip

What Makes A Good Opposition Leader?  The Opposition’s Choice  To Lead Is Critical.

We have just witnessed a General Elections in which the Government remained in control, though with the thinnest of advantage in the Lower House.

It is a  remarkable change from what was a 15 seat advantage in the last Parliament.

Having failed in his bid to secure a seat in Parliament yet again, the Opposition Leader has decided to hang up his boots and this was widely expected.

The Opposition, after a very credible showing in the recent Election, is now forced to look for a new leader who can rally the troops, build on its recent successes, and prepare for future elections, which many pundits are already suggesting might be sooner than the allowable five years.

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There is no doubt that we are now operating in a challenging environment. Recent history has shown us that globalisation has brought a more volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous environment. Any leadership position  in an opposition party requires having the right skillset to deal with these complex environments.

Leaders are constantly on tests. Their position is not a given or a right, but it is more an obligation and a responsibility. Leadership positions are constantly evaluated, and the private sector is an example of how leaders are assessed, kept or dismissed. In a political democracy, one way of assessing good leadership is through the polls and regular opinion surveys can be a benchmark for tracking leadership qualities.

The Opposition party must look at both Grenada and St. Kitts as recent examples of new, enterprising and positive leadership change.      Brand new party leaders in both countries who were able to inspire and rally their respective troops and eventually win at the polls.

. Evidence-driven studies indicate some broad skills that one needs to have to be a successful Opposition Leader. Leaders should have the ability to initiate and implement policy change.  Leaders should have abilities in party management skills. Leaders should have public communication skills.  Then there is the ‘Personal Factor’.  

Investing in specific personal qualities is key to any leadership, especially in politics. These qualities include authenticity, honesty, self-confidence and respect to democratic values amongst others. It also requires the humility to accept that any leader is not bigger than the party he leads.

The country requires a strong democracy. The challenges that Antigua & Barbuda  is facing are not small and Antigua & Barbuda requires a strong Opposition as much as it needs an effective and focused government. Antigua & Barbuda deserves both.

 

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36 COMMENTS

    • 5yrs we go haffu see your stuck record replies, wenk u na min tell Tessa for conduct sheself like less of an animal and use she head so people no hype she up and tek she fa meet she death. Mek d man strive. Pringle na need no advice for you UNLIKE you Labor party hoodrats UPP is love, brotherhood and respect so keep ya negative projections under ya skirt.

    • @ SHERFIELD

      IMF COMING. WHAT WILL BE THE EXCUSE OF THE MINIONS WHEN THIS HAPPENS.

      WHAT JUSTIFICATION WILL BE GIVEN?

    • what makes Pringle not bright?? ABLP HAD ALL THR BRIGHTEST BULBS AND DEM TAP DEY AND TIEF THE COUNTRY INTO BANKRUPTCY. MOVE AND MEK PRINGLE RH LONE. THE BRIGHT ONES BEEN KEEPING YALL RETARDED RH IN POVERTY, TINKINGNESS AND WAITING ON HANDS OUT WHILE DEM A SNACK PON $200 RICE PUDDING

      • Limp dick Pringles needs to use the WES and dead dog money he’s spending to buy woman vehicle and take up some courses at UWI, he is not politician material, but saw a way to line his pockets so capitalized on it. There are far more competent persons for that job in All Saints, Swetes and Old Road.

        Once Gaston places a strong ABLP candidate in All Saints East and St Luke he’s over with.

        He’s too comfortable and doesn’t really make any valid efforts because UPP is strong in that area.
        No major developments have taken place over the years. We are still plagued with bad roads, terrible sporting facilities.

  1. Algernon ‘Serpent’ Watts would be my choice for the leadership of the UPP, because of his debating skills, charisma and dealing with Gaston Browne in Parliament wouldn’t intimidate him at all.

    However, I do recognise the fantastic work and win by Jamale Pringle in All Saints, and garnering the votes from the AUTOCHTHONOUS people.

    But Serpent will take UPP over the winning line in due course.

    • You must be joking!!!!! Watts is nothing more than a radio personality. He has no susbstance. Watching him in parliament will be like watching a comedy show!!! Is he going to say he have the “duskements”

      • If I’m not mistaken @ Chupes, I am sure I’ve heard Gaston Browne as much times as the Honourable Algernon ‘Serpent’ Watts on the radio. Hmmm! 🤔

        Don’t you guys think before you post?

        GOODNESS GOSH … WHERE’S MI GLASSES? 👓 😁

      • @ Chupes

        GASTON WILL BE GOING TO THE IMF SOON – WHAT WILL BE THE EXCUSES OF THE MINIONS BE?

        WHAT EXCUSES WILL YOU WICKED ABLP SUPPORTERS COME UP WITH?

    • @ Brixtonian: I were you I would not popularity as a criterion to select an individual for leadership. Serpant who is very popular bcuz of his profession is a dictator who very rash & impulsive when making decisions. Richard Lewis would be the best choice. However, the spirit of Harold Lovell may hang over his head from preventing him from being the best choice.

      • I hear you @ Bluddy Bloke, but I also listen to Gaston’s blustering blather and bluster on the radio as well, and both he and Serpent are cut from the same media political cloth (so to speak).

        Gaston ‘Scrape Through’ Browne needs an adversary that can go toe to toe with him.

        However, Brixtonian does respect your point of view … 🤜🤛

      • @ Bluddy Bloke

        KEEP OUT OF UPP BUSINESS AND STUDY ABLP’S LEADERSHIP PROBLEMS.

        DO NOT CONCERN YOURSELF WITH MINGLING IN THEIR BUSINESS.

        ADVICE FROM PEOPLE LIKE YOU IS NOT SOLICITED NOR APPRECIATED NOR EVEN CONSIDERED.
        GO AND BLOKE YOURSELF OUT.

        • @ bluddy Joke: It would be a waste of time to get into UPP’s business. They are all a bunch of charlotons with a head full of saw dust. They don’t have anything to offer to this country. Richard Lewis is the rose among the thorns. Let’s hope he does not get contaminated with the blue flies filth……

      • @ Bluddy Bloke

        I CAN BET MY LAST DOLLAR THAT GASTON HAS TO GO TO THE IMF SOON

        WHAT WILL YOU SAY WHEN THAT DAY HAPPENS? WHAT WILL YOUR TALKING POINTS BE?

    • Give the Leadership to the GUNMAN from St. Phillips south. This is LAUGHABLE. BRIXTONIAN and Tabor should advise the UPP. There is no Depth in the UPP. Very shallow party. On the other hand, give it to Asot.

      • Never forget the country was virtually split 50/50 after the election @ ERIC, you watch the difference when Parliament re-starts.

        You think Gaston ‘Scrape Through’ Browne is going to have it easy again like the last 2 terms of office?

        THINK AGAIN!

        I thought you guys understood about the new political representations in Parliament?

        How the saying go again? Oh yes, ” You can’t fix stupid …”

        • @ Brxtonian:
          Sorry to say
          ya ga tired fu see Gaston’s face
          Ya can’t get he out a de race
          Bcuz de man has great leadership quality
          To run the affairs of any country.

          • “… To run the affairs of any country”.

            Ask the Bajans if they want Gaston to run their country?

            You funny @ Bluddy Bloke … keep the jokes coming 😅

      • @ ERIC
        ONLY YOU AND THE ABLP HAVE LEADERSHIP AND POLLING QUALITIES!!!!

        ALL YOUR POLLS DURING THE PAST 12 MONTHS WERE SPOT ON!!!!
        THE RESULTS DO SHOW ABLP WON 17 OUT OF 17 SEATS (17-0)
        U NAR SHAME.

        WITH YOUR KIND OF INTELLECT, UPP NEED NO ADVICE FROM YOU.

        KEEP OUT OF UPP BUSINESS AND GO FIGURE OUT HOW YOUR VOTE SHARE FROM 2018 WAS DECREASED – YOU GUYS HAVE ALL THE INTELLECT ALONG WITH ALL THE CORRUPTION.
        I WOULD RATHER TAKE PRINGLES HONESTY ANYDAY OVER ABLP’S THIEFING INTELLECT.
        GO HIDE YOUR INTELLECT UP IN YOUR AZZ.

    • Brixtonian don’t make me laugh. Serpent could not even debate Dean in Potters. Serpent knows how to cuz people. He will have a problem displaying that in the Parlaiment. He will be thrown out many times. You of course do not remember the early debating errors of Pringle. He didn’t even know the standing orders.
      What I will agree with you is that Serpent is the only one that will fight for the leadership. Just like he fought for Observer Radio to stay on the air. He is not a follower he is a leader. And will take over the UPP. Just like Lennox Linton did in Dominica. Leadership is not given to anyone. You have to fight for it. Gaston fought Lester for the leadership of the ALP. It wasn’t given to him. Therefore Satch the leadership fight to come in the UPP.

  2. Pringle does not have the statesmanship required. He cannot speak the Queen’s English properly and he is controlled by D. Giselle Isaac. UPP needs someone who can handle themselves well and think for themselves without a puppet master controlling them. Go with Lewis.

  3. Because Pringle was the sole UPP parliamentarian last time does not mean he is automatically next in line for leader. The best candidate should be leader. We do not want to be hearing “mask-es” from the leader of the party when he opens his mouth.

  4. I think Watts would be the best candidate to take ove the team personally i think he has the wisdom and know how how to lead the team into success i think hes better able in parliment also to debate the ALBP crooks. My opinion.

  5. None of the above names mentioned have Leadership qualities. Please DO NOT give the Leadership to Pringle , He does NOT have the intellect. Gaston will make a puppet of Pringle. I will stick my head out for Richard Lewis.

    • @ GORD

      ONLY ABLP HAVE LEADERSHIP QUALITIES!!!!

      KEEP OUT OF UPP BUSINESS AND GO FIGURE OUT HOW YOUR VOTE SHARE FROM 2018 WAS DECREASED – YOU GUYS HAVE ALL THE INTELLECT ALONG WITH ALL THE CORRUPTION.
      I WOULD RATHER TAKE PRINGLES HONESTY ANYDAY OVER ABLP’S THIEFING INTELLECT.
      GO HIDE YOUR INTELLECT UP IN YOUR AZZ.

  6. Give the Leadership to the GUNMAN from St. Phillips south. This is LAUGHABLE. BRIXTONIAN and Tabor should advise the UPP. There is no Depth in the UPP. Very shallow party. On the other hand, give it to Asot.

    • Your honour, I refer ERIC to my previous communication/comment with him 😅😅😅

      🎶BRING IT, BRING IT, BRING IT – 🎵 MI READY, MI READY, MI READY, 🎶 MI LOVE IT, MI LOVE IT MI LOVE IT …🎵

      Wheeeel and come again 🎤, as you rock again to Brixtonian’s King Tropical Hi Fi (tell you know lie)🎧

    • He should rest the gun under ur nose, yall just come back here and talk the most BS behind a curtain. Show urself in the comments so we can see the paragon of vitrue that you are. Keeping digging graves remember it only takes a moments indiscretion or lapse in judgement to find yrself on the wrong side of the law so ensure u dig urs one time.

  7. @ ERIC THE RED

    KEEP OUT OF UPP BUSINESS……….

    GO WORRY BOUT ABLP – THEY HAVE SO MUCH DEPTH (ONLY IN THEIR POCKETS) – YOU AND GASTON AND ALL THE MINIONS BOUGHT THE ELECTION AND VOTERS WITH JUMBY MONEY- THE AMOUNT OF MONEY ABLP GAVE AWAY TO VOTERS IN THE LAST 48 HOURS IN ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA I WOULD NOT BE SURPRISED IF GOVERNMENT WORKERS ARE NOT PAID AT THE END OF JANUARY 2023.
    GO STUDY THAT ERIC.
    ALSO I KNOW GASTON WILL GO TO THE IMF

  8. An opposition Leader in parliament is not necessarily the political leader. Some new talent can arise in five years .
    This crop will have the opportunity to exert themselves during parliamentary debates etc. In Grenada and St.Kitts it was completely different. The young Grenadian PM took over the leadership of his party, which was in the doldrums. They had gotten a clean sweep by the incumbent. The UPP lost that opportunity by going into the election with Harold Lovell as its leader. He never commanded his own party. As a independent voter he does not come across as approachable.
    I am not saying a good leader come forth from those in parliament and take the leadership of UPP Party. Six fairly young parliamentarians, at the beginning of their political careers , easily a leader can come forth. Sugy is charismatic , educated and with some good debate skills can easily shine. What is important is that they stick together, unite as they did during the election. Continue to refer to each other as brothers and grow.
    On the other hand you have a still young leader in the ABLP. Who at this point can easily slip and slide down the political ladder. I wrote several times that if ABLP lost the election it would be because of his dictatorial style of leadership. He had completely distracted the ABLP campaign with his obsession and hatred for Asot Michael. During the just concluded elections Gaston over and over behavior was of poor taste. If he is going to succeed he will have to adopt a less confrontational style. I asked this question before- Who does Gaston Browne listen to? No one can point to an individual that can sit down Gaston Browne and council him. They all bowed at his foot stool. I heard him acknowledging that he too has some changes he has to make. The Luther Lee , the kimbas , the Colin guy on Browne and Browne show , Lamin Newton and Donna Chaia , Troy Allen toó are All encouraging him down, down the wrong road. Gastón used Point FM and destroyed the red machine himself.
    He did not allow his ministers to speak on issues of success to their ministries.
    He destroyed Michael Browne . Who instead of sticking to his constituents that got him elected in the first please because full of himself and tried desperately to be like Gastón. Michael Browne did not loose because of no case – He lost because he did not entrench himself in his constituency and those of influence within his constituency. I know I am going off a bit but while I am better had – Dean Jonás lost because of his arrogance and the way he treated the farmer from Potters- not to take away anything from Serpent- congratulations Mr.Watts keep your head on and Bless GOD. Don’t bother with those that encouraging you to be like Gaston, stand up to him respectfully and don’t pick any fights- LEAD.
    The ABLP is now an aging Party and the nation youth has Spoken. They said to Gaston we know that you are talented , has the ability to take us to the next Level but you need to listen. This is not your country alone. You alone cannot decide to bring plane loads of people here don’t matter where they are from, what color are their skin and lied over and over about it . Then had your yes men ministers lying to cover up the mess, which by the way needs to be dealt with and can still put you out of office if you don’t clean this up immediately.

  9. In the near future, UPP may have some strong candidates that could be considered but in the interim, Richard Lewis may be the most articulate and the best choice for now. However, if Gaston can do it, anybody can.

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