In a speech that assesses the first year of the present PM Drew led SKN Labour Party government’s performance, St. Kitts and Nevis Opposition Party Peoples Action Movement (PAM) leader, Hon. Shawn K. Richards, presented a scathing review of the Drew led Labour administration. He addressed several critical issues affecting the nation, marking it as a year of unfulfilled promises and deteriorating governance.
Richards asserts that the PAM considers it their patriotic duty as a responsible opposition party to scrutinize the government’s actions. He stressed the importance of good governance and accountability, underlining the need for effective leadership that prioritizes citizens’ well-being.
Hon. Richards highlighted the government’s handling of crime, emphasizing the alarming surge in serious criminal offenses. He questions the efficacy of the government’s strategies in maintaining law and order, especially in light of statistics showing an increase in crimes compared to previous years.
Turning to the healthcare sector, Hon. Richards criticized the state of the main hospital and the government’s focus on a new, climate-smart facility. He urged immediate action to address the pressing issues faced by the current hospital, highlighting the need for efficient services and appropriate facilities.
Regarding education, he pointed out unfulfilled promises from the government’s manifesto and expressed concerns about the hasty implementation of policies such as introducing Spanish in primary schools. Richards stressed the importance of proper consultation with relevant stakeholders before implementing such changes.
Hon. Richards touched on the economy, asserting that despite a rebound after the pandemic, the Drew administration has failed to maintain economic momentum. Richards addressed unemployment concerns and questions the government’s lack of a comprehensive development plan.
Richards also scrutinized the government’s housing initiatives, particularly their dealings with a Trinidadian company for the construction of homes. He criticized the lack of transparency and raised questions about the project’s management and impact on local contractors.
The Opposition Party leader’s speech was critical throughout, painting a picture of a government that is failing to fulfill its promises and properly manage key sectors. He assigns the administration a grade of ‘D’ for its performance over the past year, emphasizing that it has fallen short in effectively managing the country’s affairs and addressing citizens’ needs.