The Leader of Opposition for Grenada, Dr. Keith Mitchell sat down with the Speaker of the Lower House (House of Representatives), Leo Cato on the 6th of September, to voice various concerns. Dr. Mitchell stated that he was very concerned by the manner in which the nation was being governed, specifically in public service and the House of Representatives.
At a press conference on the 5th of September, just prior to the meeting with Leo Cato, Dr. Mitchell had this to say, “After being in parliament for more than 40 years, some of the things I am seeing today are becoming more and more shocking. There are a number of issues that this country is having to face that we literally have not seen in the past.”
With regard to Dickon Mitchell and his National Democratic Congress (NDC) government, he said the following, “I am a bit worried that some of the decisions taken now are decisions that have far-reaching implications to the country’s future and viability.”
“For example, the clear deterioration of governance within the public service. Previous governments, including the NDC government, invested, initiated serious resources on public sector reform and ensuring that we can improve on the management of the public service as it serves the people of the country. What we are seeing now is literally a destruction of what we have worked for and put in place and spent millions on,” he said
He further added, “I have been in parliament for so many years, but I have never seen this, some of the decisions that are being taken and some of the initiatives and, of course, the running of the affairs of the Parliament must concern me… I am worried about the Parliament, its construct and what is happening at this time.”
A major concern that Dr. Mitchell has raised is the heckling for opposition leaders in the house when they attempt to contribute to a parliamentary debate, as is their right. He also was quite appalled by the use of phrases like “shut up” and “sit down” which he believes to be derogatory and as such have no place in the parliament.
Following his meeting with Leo Cato, Dr. Mitchell seemed optimistic about proceedings in the future and stated that he had had a productive conversation with the Speaker. “We had what I consider was a useful and frank exchange, so I look forward to the future parliamentary proceedings,” Dr Mitchell said
On September 4th, the first session of Grenada’s 11th parliament was prorogued. In fact, the Houses of parliament are either prorogued or on recess as of now.
Considering the fact that Dr. Mitchell, aged 76, is a seasoned politician, his concerns might well be justified. He himself has served as Prime Minister for two terms, once from 1995 till 2008 and again from 2013 to 2022.