I thought I was dreaming this morning shortly after 5:30 am, but apparently I was not. The wife beat me to an early rise and tuned in to the Creole morning program to catch up on the latest happenings in their simplest form.
The news suddenly woke me up that Winhall Joshua, acting in his role as mayor of Vieux Fort, had announced that, effective August 2, 2014, there will be no overtime for dockworkers. I thought for a minute that this was his emancipation gift to the workers – but I was wrong, brushing off my morning dizziness.
Not too long after, this struck me like the morning sun … wait a minute, isn’t this is the same Joshua who is a consultant in the ministry of labour, giving advice to his Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP) government on the Labour Code? Isn’t this is the same Joshua, former chairman of Dr Kenny Anthony’s election campaign and constituency office. Isn’t this the same Joshua who stood up and fought for the rights of workers in his heyday? And is this the same Joshua who was the consul general for Saint Lucia in Canada?
Hmmm... By this latest action he has indeed given up his labour union beliefs and joined the capitalist fray of Kenny and Tony (K&T Ltd) to prepare for SLP retirement due in 2016. By his very action he has also turned his back on the people of Vieux Fort much the same way he did when serving Saint Lucians in Canada. He preferred to be at the gentlemen’s club instead of being a gentleman in the service of country. I guess every man needs to have some fun. But at whose expense?
The biggest surprise is getting to know that the workers union was not part and parcel of the no-overtime rule. Prime Minister Dr Kenny Anthony, who happens to be the district representative, is standing behind the decision. It is no wonder Joshua had the strength to say to the union boys, “Don’t even think of delaying this.” Whoop! Shape up boys, Massa is back!
The history of the two men speaks for itself. Dr Kenny Anthony, as you and I know, is on display, and is as popular as the malfunctioning bra on Carnival day that exposed black nipples, much to the fascination of Rick Wayne and the Star newspaper.
By Winhall Joshua’s latest action, I am to believe that he has given up on his labour union beliefs, and now serving as a consultant to the ministry of labour, is working hand-in-hand with Dr Kenny Anthony to force cost savings. He is squeezing every ounce of blood from the poor dockworkers in Vieux Fort. These are the same workers Dr Kenny Anthony and Winhall Joshua used and abused to win political office.
The other news item of the morning was Michael Willius, former chairman for Alva Baptiste’s campaign and general manager of the Vieux Fort free zone, who is currently serving as consul general for Saint Lucia in Canada. (In the local parlance, he is a part of the cocktail ambassadors although, I am told, not even that he can do well.) After much practice, he is on-island handing over a cheque of EC$30,000 to the government towards relief supplies for last year‘s Christmas Eve Trough. Better late than never, said the wife, upon hearing the money part and whatever else. She would know something about that.
My morning coffee was already cold from the morning sun listening to the news on another stogie. Luckily, I did not have to throw out my cigar and coffee. That’s too expensive with 15% VAT added to the cost. Unlike the former National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) director who, sadly, had to dump a container of supplies coming from the efforts of Michael Willius, Consul General for Saint Lucia in Canada.
Trust me, the Creole morning news is a mind opener, designed to wake you up thinking, with good humour. The likes of Dr Kenny Anthony, Winhall Joshua and Michael Willius should all have remained in their villages on the South end of the island. And not embarrass Saint Lucians to the world.
They having all learned by the same method of using the trade union movement and trade union workers to win political office and gain political jobs. Now these are the same persons who choose to turn on workers with a vengeance in the most difficult of times.