By Lloyd Noel
The independence celebrations for our 39th anniversary since statehood was granted to our tri-island state was very low-key when compared to the huge crowds and noisy attention the two front-line political parties have been attracting. And I am sure the remaining few days up to that Tuesday the nineteenth, will be just as rowdy and colourful, and highly competitive for the people’s attention and approval come “E Day”.
Lloyd Noel is a former attorney general of Grenada, prominent attorney at law and political commentator
But this article will be my last one before the important date -- so that whatever I am suggesting hereafter will be my last input before that crucial decision is made by all those voters who will be going to cast their votes at the various polling stations islands-wide.
The more I hear and read, about what has been taking place in the last six to nine months, and very definitely will have some critical importance to the election campaign, and the final MPs who will be chosen to form the next government -- as well as the path and the programs the eventual winners will be following and implementing, should the election results bring about the changes so many are advocating – the more concerned I am becoming that we are, or could be, very close to some major upheavals not very far away down the eventual roadway we seem to be approaching.
And even at this 99th hour, before we go to put our “Xs” next to the house or heart, to help in bringing about the next set of MPs to form the next government of our troubled tri-island state, for the up-coming five years, we still owe it to ourselves and those coming after us, to think, and rethink, and think again before we put that “X” next to the “Heart” or “House”.
As the campaign trail becomes hotter and more personal, as the days and the rallies moving down to single figures before that all-important Tuesday, one can almost feel the tension and the pent-up anxiety floating in the atmosphere once you approach any size gathering of party supporters in their respective jersey colours.
And whatever is the motive for the belated noticing, that the last six days of the election campaign would be in the religious Lenten period – that state of affairs seems to be a last ditch complaint against the NDC leaders for holding the elections in Lent.
How that situation would help or hinder one side or the other, only time and the turnout at the polls, and the actual results after the votes are counted, will perhaps give the analyst some indication as to which party benefited mostly from the Lenten decision, if it has any bearing at all.
But I suppose at this last ditch stage of the campaign, anything and everything becomes an issue for contention and rejection by one side or the other.
And that is precisely why the voters have to be alert, and on the lookout for the complaints and worthwhile areas of criticisms by one side against the other in these last days.
The promises for development and full scale employment are also coming out loud and clear – especially from the opposition side of yesteryear.
Where the funds will be coming from, and who will be the developers providing the jobs, are critical issues for consideration by voters.
There can be no denying that a lot of our people have been under serious economic pressure for the past two years or more, and urgent relief from that state of affairs is vitally important, and very critical for the progress of the people and advancement of the tri-island state. But just as important and of vital concern for our nation state in the years ahead are who the funds will be coming from for the investments, and what are the strings attached thereto, as well as the character and legalistic appearance of the investors.
Our people have been embarrassed and made a laughing stock in the outside world for too many years – and all because of the types of people our past governments have associated with, for the individual ministers’ financial benefit, while the nation state and its people remained impoverished.
The people voted for change in 2008, but nearly half of the winning team rebelled and abandoned the ship of state – and the rest is now history.
And here we are again on the verge of voting for more change, or for the continuation of what exists, in the hope that the foundation laid down over the past four and a half years will have matured to a highly efficient standard and ready to produce results for the benefit of our people.
The date for decision is Tuesday, 19th February 2013, and the verdict is yours.