By Lloyd Noel
The 40th anniversary celebrations were fully recognised and widely supported by the large number of our people who were nicely clad in their red green and gold jerseys and other emblems, in the week leading up to Friday 7th February, and highlighted at the National Stadium despite the inclement weather on the day itself.
Lloyd Noel is a former attorney general of Grenada, prominent attorney at law and political commentator
And of course the speeches and other nice-sounding phrases were all over the media and in public gatherings by those in control or in authority.
But now that the occasion is history, the question begs itself – what next?
All the officials who held high offices in those 40 years – from the first prime minister, the late Sir Eric Matthew Gairy, and all the others who followed in his footsteps, as well as the many governors general who held office in those years – were all remembered and mentioned during the main celebration at the Stadium on Friday.
It was interesting to hear the current prime minister, as he looked back at the political history and recalled the names of those who served at that level – and to also remember that he also served for 14 of those years, and here he is again with another four years to serve.
There can be no doubting, therefore, that the PM now in control must have acquired the necessary experience and on the job training, to be able to perform a whole lot better than his predecessors and the one NDC PM he also defeated last year.
But with that level of experience, and occupation of the seat of power of our tri-island state for all those years, the question begs itself, has he lived up to the level of expectation required of him by those who voted himself and his party into office on four separate occasions?
The answer would no doubt be a matter of opinion, or more precisely of which party those replying to the question are used to being the supporters over the years.
Whatever the answers may be, or whoever is answering and the reasoning behind their answers, the facts remain the same for all those years, in that the plans and programs and promises put forward by the current PM thus far have all remained just as their names suggest.
So here we are again, in the 50th year of the PM and his NNP total control of the reins of power in our tri-island state, and the question begs itself, where are we heading and how do we plan on getting wherever?
There can be no denying that the economic situation as a whole is rough or rather shallow, and from all appearances the existing conditions do not look like improving any time soon.
In these conditions, a whole lot of people and families are under serious pressure, and from all the feedback thus far things do not look like easing up in the near future, or sooner rather than later.
In those circumstances, therefore, the powers-that-be and controllers must be seen to be putting practical systems in place, so as to change the direction things are going and help in improving the conditions the people are struggling under to make ends meet.
The nice-sounding promises – of overseas Investors coming to the islands, to provide all those much needed jobs for the people who were unemployed – remain just as they sounded, despite the fact that the great majority were fully convinced and voted all the NNP candidates into office a second time.
Many more have lost their occasional jobs in the first year since that victory and, by all appearances in the upcoming second year, things do not look any better at this point in time nor for the near future – and the budgeted increased property taxes will only make bad matters even worse.
So as we wait on the controllers, in the hope of seeing some improvement and changes in the existing conditions – especially for those families who have been under serious and ongoing financial pressure in recent times – we can also look back over our 40 years of independence and hope that things would improve in the upcoming years.
The celebrations at the National Stadium were colourful and impressive, although the crowd was not as big as in many former years.
Whatever is in the pipeline for the many families in dire need – the hope of many is that some of it will be soon in coming, in the controllers’ second year in the seats of power.