Basseterre, ST. KITTS (KYSS FM) – The St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party released an official statement on what they deem as the “reprehensible conduct and behavior” by the Speaker of the National Assembly, Hon. Michael Perkins.
In the letter, the SKNLP accused Speaker Perkins of attempting to muzzle the Opposition.
The party has said that this letter serves as a warning signal that corruption of the Parliament must stop and as a plea to right-thinking citizens to decry the abhorrent and undemocratic actions of the government and the Speaker in an effort to preserve democracy.
The letter primarily addressed the last sitting of Parliament in which Senator Nigel Carty and Rt. Hon. Dr. Denzil Douglas were denied the opportunity to speak on the St. Christopher and Nevis Air and Sea Port Authority Amendment Bill 2018.
An excerpt from the letter reads, “Speaker Michael Perkins was deliberate, blatant and arrogant in his dismissal of the Opposition’s appeal to him for an opportunity to address the bill before the House. Instead, the Speaker on yet another occasion, allowed the government side to wind up the debate, thereby shutting out the members of the Opposition. Such egregious and contemptible acts have become the norm in our Parliament since Mr. Perkins assumed the speakership.”
It continued, “Mr. Perkins displays an uncommon ineptitude and callous disregard for the rules governing the Parliament and for the rights and privileges of the members of the Opposition. The naked flouting of the rules of Parliament and the abuse of Opposition members are part of a deliberate conspiracy hatched between Mr. Perkins and members of the government, the Prime Minister in particular.”
The St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party also accused the Speaker of being bias, his actions being part of an attempt to discredit Hon. Konris Maynard in order to catapult Senator the Hon. Akilah Byron-Nisbett’s public profile.
Senator Byron-Nisbett will likely be the People’s Labour Party candidate for the West Basseterre seat in the next elections.
Attacks by the Speaker on Dr. Douglas and other members of the Labour Party MPs were also highlighted in the letter.
Another excerpt read, “We note too that the attacks on the Leader of the Opposition, former Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dr. Denzil Douglas have also been stepped up as are the attacks on Central Basseterre Representative Hon. Marcella Liburd.
It continued, “The most recent sitting of Parliament is the clearest indication yet that a tyrannical dictatorship, aided and abetted by the Speaker, is thriving in our once-democratic country. Dr. Timothy Harris and his government are trying to run roughshod over their opposition counterparts in Parliament while corruption flows wanton in the streets of Basseterre.”
Speaker Michael Perkins remains silent on the issue.