BASSETERRE, ST KITTS, November 25, 2021 – Outgoing National Political Leader of the opposition St Kitts-Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP), The Right Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas has reaffirmed his support for the National Political Leader and all other of the leadership who emerge at the end of the SKNLP leadership elections on Sunday 28th November.
In an opening statement at a Press Conference Thursday morning at which an overview of activities were conducted following the June 2020 general elections, Dr Douglas said he was pleased to join the Leadership Candidates, the St Kitts-Nevis Labour Party Electoral Commission and members of the media.
“Permit me to indicate my full approval and support of this Electoral Race that is ongoing to elect the National Political Leader of the St Kitts-Nevis Labour Party. I want you to note that I said a “Race” and not a “Battle” or a “war”. Secondly, I also wish to confirm the steps that were taken to bring the Party to this stage of the process in determining or electing not only our new Party Political Leadership (National Political Leader and 2 deputy National Political Leaders) but the new Administrative Leadership of the Party that is: the National Chairman, 3 Vice National Chairpersons, and the Assistant National Secretary of the Party. The National Secretary, National Treasurer and Assistant National Treasurer, etc will be appointed eventually,” said Dr Douglas.
Dr Douglas said following the June 5, 2020 general elections, the Party “went into Retreat and self introspection to assess our performance in the June 2020 General Elections, analyse the outcome, and plan our way forward. We recognize a travesty was committed against the citizens/electorate of St Kitts and Nevis.”
He said there was mass rigging of the elections by the incumbent government, and the world was alarmed with the serious erosion of the democratic freedoms by the government which conducted General Elections during a State of Emergency under the guise of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“We committed then to create a number of Working Groups to further study our situation as we welcomed new ideas and approaches to better understand and address our strengths and weaknesses while developing strategies for moving forward,” said Dr Douglas.
In December 2020, the Annual National Conference of the Party ratified the work of the various Working Groups established from the Retreat of August 2020 and created a number of committees among which were the National Strategic Plan Committee 2021–2026; the Constitutional Reform Committee; the National Leadership Transition Council in order to create a more modern and functional Party and advise on transition of leadership.
In May 2021, a National Constitutional Conference of the Party was held to provide constitutional support to the recommendations made for a restructured, reformed and more functional Party. With this new structure, strategic plan and recommendations for succession and transition to new leadership, the path was now mapped out for what is being discussed in this Conference today…that is, the National Leadership Electoral Conference that is scheduled for the Sunday 28thNovember 2021.
He said the Leadership Electoral Conference will have delegates in attendance from the 8 Branches of the Party in St Kitts, the National Executive, Labour Women Organisation, Young Labour Organization, and the St Kitts-Nevis Trades & Labour Union – the sister organization of the St Kitts-Nevis Labour Party.
He noted that normally, the Annual National Conference would have both a Public Session and a Private/Business Session. The Annual National Conference 2021 will have only the Private Session which will involve the Conference Address to Delegates by the National Political Leader; ratification of a National Executive Resolution that will empower the St Kitts-Nevis Labour Party Electoral Commission with the responsibility of managing the elections; Conducting the Elections for the National Leadership (political and administrative) of the Party which will take place over several hours.
This Election will be held for the first time by secret balloting under the supervision of the Electoral Commission of which Ms Rattan is the Chair.