Caribbean News Now!

About Us Contact Us

Countries/Territories

Jump to your country or territory of interest

Advertise with us

Reach our daily visitors from around the Caribbean and throughout the world. Click here for rates and placements.

Contribute

Submit news and opinion for publication

Subscribe

Click here to receive our daily regional news headlines by email.

Archives

Click here to browse our extensive archives going back to 2004

Also, for the convenience of our readers and the online community generally, we have reproduced the complete Caribbean Net News archives from 2004 to 2010 here.

Climate Change Watch

The Caribbean is especially vulnerable to rising sea levels brought about by global warming. Read the latest news and information here...

Travel


Follow Caribbean News Now on Twitter
Connect with Caribbean News Now on Linkedin



News from the Caribbean:


Back To Today's News

Commentary: The IMF cannot rescue Grenada
Published on March 31, 2014 Email To Friend    Print Version

By Hudson George

I read Lloyd Noel’s article (The IMF to our rescue, March 25, 2014). Basically it seems as though Mr Noel believes that the IMF money can save Grenada. On the other hand, he did not stick to this topic, as he gives some information about Grenada’s history in terms of the past economic activities before and after Grenada’s independence. In particular, he mentions about the Eric Gairy and Maurice Bishop different styles of government, even though he did not make an analysis about whether or not the majority of Grenadians are richer or poorer today.

hudson_george.jpg
Hudson George has a BA in Social Science from York University, Toronto, Canada. He has been writing since his early teenage years and now contributes letters and articles to a number of Caribbean newspapers
Personally, I do not think that the IMF can help Grenada’s development in terms of creating prosperity. It can only help the government to remain stable with the millions of dollars loan. The IMF loans cannot change the mentality of the way the majority of citizens think. The political culture in the tri-island state is based on tribalism, whereby most citizens put party loyalty above unity and nation building. However, the sad thing is that the politicians are not the ones who are suffering economically. They are all educated people who have a profession that can help them put food on their table, when their political career is over.

Based on what I gathered from Mr Noel’s article, he seems to believe that the IMF loan is something as a rescue mission, similar to the way he always praises the US army for invading Grenada on October 25, 1983. And if I am correct with my analysis, it seems as though Mr Noel’s is thinking similar to People’s Revolutionary Government faction that overthrew Maurice Bishop on October 19, 1983, and was hoping that, if the US army had not invaded Grenada, they would have been successful with the type of regime that they wanted to imposed on the Grenadian people.

However, I have been reading Mr Noel’s weekly articles and, based on the contents of this last article he wrote, most likely he was expecting to see some kind of political turmoil in the country, with Grenada Union of Teachers president Lyndon Lewis calling for a strike if the government is not able to pay teachers their back pay and increase in salary that they are entitled to.

And based on what I heard in the interview Mr Lewis gave on Sunday, January 26, 2014, on Grenada Broadcast with host George Grant, who operates his Sunday radio programme as an opposition propaganda medium, where the callers to the programme are 99% anti government supporters, I guess that Mr Noel is sort of disappointed that the IMF will give the government the loan.

Most likely, Mr Noel was expecting that Mr Lewis would call a teachers strike against the government because Mr Lewis does not take the same political stand as the other influential trade union leaders, who seem to make to be compromising with employers in these rough economic times.

In addition, even though I am not living in Grenada, I am a born and bred Grenadian and I understand the way most Grenadians think. However, although Mr Noel is much older than me, I think he has not made a political life review as yet. During my youthful days, I remember listening to Mr Noel addressing political rallies in 1973. Those days, he was a New Jewel Movement political activist, leading demonstrations against Eric Gairy’s plans to make Grenada an independent country. Presently, I am very much disappointed with Mr Noel’s political reasoning, knowing that he was involved in campaign to shut down Grenada, in order to prevent Eric Gairy from becoming Grenada’s first prime minister.

I can only assume that Mr Noel did not make it his duty to contact Mr Lewis and sit down with the young ambitious comrade and give him some sensible advice about the positive and negative effects trade union leaders can have on society, when political motives are part of the conflict. I am not too sure if Mr Lewis is aware of Mr Noel’s past history as a political activist within the New Jewel Movement that was part of the Committee of 22 that was an alliance movement formed in 1973 to oppose Eric Gairy.

The Committee of 22 was an alliance movement made up of all organisations opposed Gairy’s GULP government taking Grenada to independence in 1974. The alliance movement was made up of trade union leaders, capitalists, communists, socialists, interchurch council, Grenada medical association, Grenada law society, plutocrats and urban high school students.

Additionally, although Gairy became the victor against the Committee of 22 during the course of the struggle, when some leaders broke ranks and the strike came to an end a few weeks before independence, the various organisations remained anti-Gairy. In the 1976 general election, the Herbert Blaize GNP party formed an alliance party with New Jewel Movement led by Maurice Bishop as the leader. The Alliance Party won six seats and Gairy’s GULP won nine seats. The election was a close call for Gairy’s regime, as a large percentage of younger voters voted for the Alliance party and Bishop became the official opposition leader.

On March 13, 1979, the New Jewel Movement led a coup under the leadership of Maurice Bishop and toppled the Gairy regime from power; and formed the People‘s Revolutionary Government. Mr Noel was made attorney general but after a short period of time he became an open critic of the revolution. Mr Noel was locked up indefinitely by the revolution. He remained in prison until the US army invaded Grenada in October 1983.

However, I am not blaming Mr Noel for opposing the revolution. Based on my personal observation and experience with some of the top the People‘s Revolutionary Army officers, it was blatantly clear to see that they created a sort of urban elite clique and, if the revolution had not crumpled in October 1983 after Bishop was executed, rural Grenadians would have become second class citizens and sub-servants of a urban based government. Therefore, most likely Mr Noel must have rebelled against that type of political prejudice. Most likely he must have seen the leaders of the revolution were trying to introduce a new brand of internal colonisation on the masses of people in the tri-island state.

However, even though I respect Mr Noel as a man who stood up against the evils of the revolution, I am kind of disappointed with him, as he seems to lack the vision of today’s global politics. I beg Mr Noel to encourage young Grenadians to be more creative, if he really cares about the nation’s future. It is high time for Mr Noel to come to the realisation that the Gairy and Bishop regimes are now history. The banana industry is also part of our past history and Grenadian traffickers trading local products to Trinidad and Tobago came before globalisation took control of our Caribbean region. The big question Mr Noel must ask himself is: Is the majority of Grenadians richer or poorer today, as material things become more the basic necessities of life?
 
Reads: 3574





Click here to receive daily news headlines from Caribbean News Now!



Back...

Comments:

anthony david:

Mr. George, Mr. George like you I strongly believe that the IMF/Gda economic package will not work. At best it would provide some relief in the interim, but will prove to be detrimental in the long run as it lays out no comprehensive plan for Gda’s long term outlook and survivability. It’s quite clear that you disagree with Mr. Noël’s current position and on a wider scale his more than four decade involvement in Grenada’s politics. However you offered no solutions to the tremendous fiscal and economic crisis facing our country. Instead you gave us a history lesson on Mr. Noël one which he might have some serious differences with. It’s time that we begin to use this and other platforms to start a serious and quality debate as to Grenada’s future. Now history lessons are a good thing but it’s time for solutions, not for who did what, who failed or who stood by as observers while the biggest and most important game was been played.

Like issues of agriculture and what we do, can we find ways to add greater value to the products we produce, how do we get young people to become active participants in that industry. The question must also be asked what products we plant, what gives us the best return on investment. How can we get provide strong and compelling incentives to get all the currently under cultivated lands back into production. The same hard and critical look should be given to our fishery industry as to what can be done to sufficiently exploit the resources of the waters that surround us.

Tourism are we spending our dollars in the right places, should we continue to focus on the traditional markets like Canada, United States and parts of Europe or begin to look at other growing and developing countries with expanding middle class population looking for places to spend their disposable income. What do we do about the airport and has it become the economic vehicle t was intended to be. It is rumored that the Gda airport manager earns more than the person who runs New York’s JFK. If true the question must be asked are we getting the best bang for our buck or can said monies be better spent elsewhere.

Are we building the right type of roads or doing it the same way it was done a century ago. What is the system in place for deciding which roads gets built, when and how all questions needing to be asked. Should the Government allow the price of cooking gas rise by removing the subsides and investing those monies into solar and other renewable. Hard questions, some may cause disruptions and anger among our population but to grow out of the current malaise and economic dark tunnel we must begin to first think differently and then do differently. It’s time for a new approach.

Are we educating our young people to be not just workers of the future but to become job creators and entrepreneurs? Is their current course of study preparing them for a future not just in Grenada but one that gives them a fighting chance and maybe a leg up on the competition in this global economy? Are we giving the teachers and other educators the support and tools they need to better prepare our future leaders in Government, industry and the nonprofit sectors.

Is the Government we have to big, can it be streamlined and made smaller and at the same time become more productive without creating additional economic hardship on our people. Recently is was speaking to a Grenadian national living abroad who is a re-organization and efficiency specialist he noted that if the Government sector was efficiently and effectively re-engineered the work could be done with half the workforce currently employed. Should that be something we take a closer look at. Are there duplications that can be consolidated or gotten rid of? Can we find a way to move more people into more productive sectors of our economy who currently sit around in Government offices doing the absolute minimum? Let’s start the debate, Grenada needs it, Grenada demands it, Grenada will not grow, prosper or survive without it. Other areas also needs to be visited, issues about the environment and the effects of climate change. It is predicted that small countries like Grenada would suffer tremendously from its effects, ask the people of Bangladesh. Are we using our foreign policy to truly advance Grenada’s interest and development? Are we forging the right kind of relationships with the countries and regions of the world that would be able to help us in ways that are not counterproductive to our own needs and wishes?

So it’s time to ask the naysayers and politicians who seek to divide and work for their own interest to step aside and allow a brand new set of actors to take the stage and lead Grenada to a place we all want and dream of that would make our kids and generations to come proud of the path we laid and the land we built with an always upward and forward thinking trajectory. The time has come, we can no longer idle hang around and not demand better from ourselves and the people who purports to lead.


Back...

Send us your comments!  

Send us your comments on this article. All fields are required.

For your contribution to reach us, you must (a) provide a valid e-mail address and (b) click on the validation link that will be sent to the e-mail address you provide.  If the address is not valid or you don't click on the validation link, we will never see it!

Your Name:

Your Email:

(Validation required)

Comments:
Enter Code





Disclaimer
User comments posted on this website are the sole views and opinions of the comment author and are not representative of Caribbean News Now or its staff. Caribbean News Now accepts no liability and will not be held accountable for user comments.
Caribbean News Now reserves the right to remove, edit or censor any comments. Any content that is considered unsuitable, unlawful or offensive, includes personal details, advertises or promotes products, services or websites or repeats previous comments will not be approved.
Before posting, please refer to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.



Other Headlines:



Regional Sports: