By Hastings R. Daniel In the public interest.
It is somewhat unusual to name a person as man of the years. We normally select a man of each year.
In this episode we are transcending tradition and in light of the fact that we have not been naming men of the year for the past five years we are endeavouring to do so in 2019 by looking backwards and forwards. A man of the years should pass through political and public life and transcend them. The man of the years should have displayed courage, conduct and class in all his dealings. He should like our ultimate Leader Jesus Christ have endured hardship even political Gethsemane and should come out with flying colours. Indeed we like what President Trump said of the late John Mc.Cain prefer those who went to battle and were never captured. We say then to large acclaim that our man of the years 2015-2020 has been attacked from every angle with every dart and sword but today standing not still but tall.
The Right Honourable Dr. Denzil Llewellyn Douglas has been in politics for nigh thirty (30) years. Twenty (20) of those years have been as our Prime Minister. All of those years he has largely been the Leader of the great Labour Party for the good that he can do. We must perforce take cursory glances at his tenure of prime minister to contextualise our naming of him as man of the years. The record then will show that Douglas was Leader of the opposition before and after he assumed the prime ministership. This article will chronicle his courage, conduct and class in his second term as Leader of the Labour party in opposition and would suggest that it bodes well for his imminent return to his second term as Prime Minister before going gently into the sunset of his political life.
It is now in the annals of our political history that a Labour Party Chairman brought down the Labour Party government in 2015 by using or being used by the PAM. Those elections were run against one man and one man only: Denzil L. Douglas. Mark you that said gentleman, the political Judas if he were the leader of the Labour Party could not win the government against PAM. One would have thought that for the personal and political hatred of our man of the years the Unity cabal would have carried out their threats to lock up, harass and eventually engineer the relocation of Denzil from St. Kitts. Take me a friend of our man of the years. I was constantly bombarded with stories that my boy would have to abscond and that they have some much dirt on him that he would be buried under that mound of dirt.
It must have caused Denzil and his immediate family some concern and consternation as the yellow, blue and orange side of the Federation bloated out mouthings, media releases and mockeries of his tenure as PM and his impending penalties for those excesses.
Today after four years of strutting their stuff Denzil is walking in Basseterre just like they say the apostle “John is walking in Jerusalem” bestriding the political stage like a colossus. The last budget speech he even dared them to “lock me up.” His 2018 year culminating in his 2-hour broadside against the same man who bedeviled him in 2015. He is the only man to have led a broadside from the Opposition calling for a vote of no confidence in the Harris again and again government. Mark you our former leaders have not fared well after losing elections. Denzil predecessor left St. Kitts to live offshore for many a year after facing a commission of inquiry into his administration. In Nevis CCM leader was so vanquished that people close to him was concerned about his frequent visit to a health institution. In time he had to use some say abuse the Courts to dodge a Commission of inquiry that had the potential to cripple him both personally and politically. One would have thought that with the vitriol and vituperation that attended the 2015 campaign that Denzil would have faced a few commissions.
In a strange twist of fate everything that the Unity cabal criticized such as the Land for Debt Swap is intact as we speak. The CBI programme that should have been on the Consolidated Fund is still where it was however rebranded. Douglas as PM was touted and tainted as crime minister as every crime in the country was associated with him. Today St.Kitts and Nevis has descended into double murder rate and criminality under the Harris cabal culminating in the marring of jovert 2018, a new phenomenon in criminality in St.Kitts. Our man of the years have proven that while in office he instituted projects, policies and programmes that have stood the test of time with a recalcitrant government. Our man of the years has been made to look ten times to the good not only surviving but succeeding in opposition.
Sadly what has changed however for the worse is the declining economy and the resultant capitulation of a buoyant people well led. The St. Kitts economy has tilted towards slowdown and loss of jobs for the past four (04) years meandering through a morass of ineptitude, incompetence and a brand of nepotism never before seen in any administration the world over. Our man of the years keeps calling for the IMF report on the St.Kitts Nevis economy. A government that boasts a large surplus cannot approve that publication. Our man of the years comes from a large family in a closely knit village of St. Pauls. During
his tenure as PM he has never touted and placed all his family members in critical organs of government. It is not that the Douglas family is not highly intelligent and qualified. He ran the country as the leader of party and country recognizing that every man, woman and child deserves an equal chance. Today his successor is a one-arm political bandit running a country with and for only his family. There was never and will never be only Douglas again. The country has now seen what we call Harris and cabal again. That makes our man of the years look tall and magnanimous. Today in St.Kitts from financial institutions, health, legal, trucking, government paymasters, prison, police all the head honchos
have come from one family and by extension one constituency. Take an aside political joke. How the smallest constituency in terms of voters come to get two state of the art medical institutions? Is it that there is so much pressure and disillusionment in #7 that all they can do out there is get sick and go hospital? Leadership of the Unity cabal has made our man of the years look light years above in comparison.
Our quintessential man of the years has a personal and professional style that has been trampled upon by his successor. Take the recommending of a knighthood to his ace political and some say personal enemy the first prime minister. Douglas was magnanimous enough to ensure that gentleman was in the pantheon of knighthood. The present PM would never bring himself to even entertain the thought of recommending his predecessor for even a night out much less a knighthood. Is not this the same PM who yanked a simple pleasantry as a diplomatic passport from an immediate past PM? Some small boy!
Some nitwit! Not only did he yank the passport but when our man of the years obtained a diplomatc passport from an OECS country he set in motion a court case to further embarrass our man of the years. That attempt to further humiliate our man of the years will ridicule and render the Harris cabal the embarrassment of the century. Through it all our man of the years has remained calm, committed and cool in leading the Labour Party that is now poised to return to office.
Our man of the years has pride of person, pride of place and pride of country. During his nigh thirty (30) years in political life as PM, Opposition Leader has anybody heard or even smell anything of him asking anybody for a personal favour? My man of the years should have class. It is mandatory. Men of the years cannot be mendicants and personal beggars. Our man of the years 2015-2020 was without the plenitude of state power and he always wore shoes and good classy shoes too and he has had a watch on his hand. Nobody but nobody could be forward enough to say that he solicited those meek items from a foreign leader or a businessman wanting to settle in St.Kitts. I am sure our quintessential man of the years eat good food. He is however not frequently in everybody’s house asking what you have there to eat. We want our men of the years to have a lot of class and at all times conduct themselves as the very epitome of the proud people of St.Kitts and Nevis.
So then The Right Honourable Denzil Llewellyn Douglas you have earned the right over these years to be our man. Take a bow brother and reach for the stars. Go Further! Forever new frontiers! There is a little song we Weselyan Holiness Church members sing to which we commend to you : It says: ”Conquering now and still to conquer rideth a King in his might, leading the hosts of all the faithful into the midst of the fight, See them with victory advancing clad in their brilliant array, chanting the name of their Leader hear them exultingly say Not to the strong is the battle not to the swift is the race but to the true and the faithful victory is promised through grace.” SELAH!