Basseterre, SKN: Prime Minister of Saint Kitts and Nevis – Dr Timothy Harris, recently addressing the nation, informed that a framework had been proposed by him regarding the numerous concerning matters raised by tripartite leaders during last weeks’ meeting, adding that a “code of conduct” will be implemented soon for the better functioning of the Cabinet, as the country witnesses political uneasiness.
The parties’ leaders, comprising the tripartite Team Unity Movement, met in the Cabinet Room on April 14, where the framework and alterations were made by the SKN Prime Minister and other Cabinet ministers for the “way forward of twin islands administration.”
During the meeting, Prime Minister Harris further recapitulated the significance and necessity of ministries being accountable to the Cabinet, as it will assist the members in remaining in touch with the regular improvements being made by them in the path of twin-island’s development.
“I also proposed that all the ministries must be subject to greater accountability to the Cabinet by regularly reporting so that the members will be better apprised of the workings of the entire government.”
While replying to the request of reassigning the portfolios, PM Harris said that he remains committed to undertaking and reviewing the “makeup of the Cabinet” in due course, with the motive to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the SKN government as a whole.
In relation to the above-mentioned statement, PM Harris cites, “Although, I made it clear that I could not permit ‘constitutional provocative’ of the office of the Prime Minister to be diminished.”
He added that progress had been made on the request done to the world bank for conducting a study to counsel equitable revenue-sharing arrangements between the federal government and the Nevis island administration.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Harris further notified that the budgetary support to Nevis island has also been raised after Premier Mark Brantley’s request.
“Past weeks’ political events created undue anxiety among people, discomfort and uncertainty; it is for this reason that I remain fully committed to the process which will bring an end to the unfortunate situation,” asserted Prime Minister Harris.
An exemplary and fully committed Cabinet remains the need of the hour which will address the issues confronting the general population of St Kitts and Nevis, including – job creation, cost of living, caring for the poor and elderly population, maintaining the peace and security, and social as well as economic recovery from the impacts of the contagious COVID-19 pandemic, Prime Minister underscored, as he asks politicians to remain resolute for the development of the people and avoid indulging in petty politics.
Deputy Prime Minister Shawn Richards was seen as disappointed after Thursday’s meeting. Elucidating his view, Richards stated that the progress listed by the Prime Minister is not satisfactory.
“PAM and CCM made the positions clear on several issues, and we thought it was reasonable to give some time to the Prime Minister to consider the matters and to report back to us today. However, while there was some minor progress on a few issues, it was not what the country needed for an urgent resolution,” Deputy Prime Minister added.
During the last meeting, the People’s Action Movement (PAM) and Concerned Citizens Movement (CCM) put forward some of the significant matters of concern which are “must” be dealt with soon, especially during the current scenario of political flux in the twin-island Federation. These matters included – good governance, transparency and accountability.
In view of Richards, seeing the current situation and amid the second failed meeting, there is no meaningful platform at which all the three political parties can build a strong bond.