WRONG_WOEID WRONG_WOEID

ALP is not the Answer

ALP is not the AnswerThe public disagreement between Leader of the Antigua Labour Party Lester Bird and Chairman Gaston Browne is a clear indication that the ALP has not changed. After eight years in opposition, the ALP still does not get it.

The people of Antigua & Barbuda need proper and organised leadership, a quality that has been lacking since "Noah built the Ark". We tried both the ALP and the UPP, and the two have failed.

I hear talk of back to the ALP. Why would any reasonable person want to do that?

The ALP’s infighting will amount to nothing but chaos, for the party and the people.



True, the UPP is losing popularity. But if the ALP believes that the people will turn to them for leadership, they will have to change from the past misguided ways and bring something new to the table.

Anything short of that, and it’s another defeat in 2014.

The UPP’s current problems are enormous. The Chinese Power Plant issue, wanton spending and snail’s pace decision making are all elements of the government’s poor ranking.

Lack of transparency and accountability are also plaguing the government.

Rather than take this opportunity to put a proper system in place to showcase to the people, the ALP continues to fight within. At least four members are fighting for the leader of the opposition’s chair.

And Bird, while ailing and fighting his own legal battles, is not backing out from the challenges; remember (fu me Pupa build dis) ah VC Bird party this.

Other members are fighting the ALP leadership on constitutional matters concerning the appointment of candidates to represent certain constituencies.

There have been suggestions that Bird would step down from the chair if the ALP won the 2014 general elections, and he became prime minister of Antigua & Barbuda for the third time.

Those spying his seat, however, may not want to wait, since nothing is cast in stone and there is a possibility that Bird may become "drunk with power" and never give it up.

That’s if there was any such deal on the table.

Though he is party leader, Bird has been extremely selective in his public utterances, despite the need for solid leadership at this time.

Browne is the party’s deputy leader, and the heir apparent to Bird’s seat, but latterly, Molwyn Joseph has been the one leading the fight against the government while the two at the top have been noticeably quiet.

Until Bird called out Browne on the economic citizenship matter, both had been relatively silent as Joseph pressed the government about monies spent on the Chinese Power Plant and public fences.



US$52 M for the plant and a misunderstood amount, and a minimum of EC$50 M in contracts for fences have been Joseph’s weapons against the government.

There is no secret that Browne would like to be prime minister of Antigua & Barbuda.

Joseph, Robin Yearwood, and Steadroy “Cutie” Benjamin also aspire to rule.

The dilemma for all these individuals hoping to be prime minister of Antigua & Barbuda is the fact that to get there, they have to go through Lester Bird. But why fight?

It would benefit the ALP if Bird would pass the leadership to one of the members after serious consultation with the party’s senior members.

Pick the person most capable to lead, and support that individual.

Bird may have the most support for leadership in the party, but on a national scale, he is perhaps the party’s main liability.

If Bird made this honourable gesture, perhaps - just perhaps - the electorate would take notice and at least begin to look at the ALP differently.

There is no doubt that the people are really fed up with the UPP, but the ALP, in its present state, cannot be trusted.

As a matter of fact, it will take a whole lot more than an honourable handover for the ALP to restore any trust, if at all.

The ALP would have to admit to its past failures, and that is not something that party appears capable of doing.

There is no unity among the ALP.

It appears that they are simply sitting on the sidelines waiting and hoping for the government to self-destruct so they can grab power.

That’s the ALP’s main problem; they want power; they do not want to govern.

With two years 'til the next general elections, the ALP is as disorganised and broken as it ever was. Anyone who says different is not speaking the truth.

By the time the ALP is able to select candidates for each constituency, the elections may be due, with no time to properly organise.

I hear so much talk about getting rid of the UPP, but I do not see any evidence of the alternative the ALP being any better than the present government.



The party’s track record is an open book of mismanagement.

I doubt very much that the ALP has the capabilities to be any different that it has been in the past. At least if there is, I have not seen it.

If they could change, the ALP would have done so years ago. Now may be too late.

One thing is certain. We the people of Antigua & Barbuda cannot continue on this present path with a failing UPP.

The question is, is the ALP the answer?

I say no. What do you say?

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23 Comments In This Article   

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ALP is not the answer

#23 Daughter of Klaas » 2012-07-12 20:38

I beg to disagree. The ALP IS the answer! However, NOT under its present configuration. The ALP is the only party, to date, dedicated to the upliftment of the sons and daughters of Klaas. Sadly, straddling and strangling the ALP is the current crop of leaders - the next generation - self-serving, greedy, intellectually and mentally challenged. They have long strayed from the basic tenets, values, goals etc. of what the Antigua Labour Party once stood for. Lester, Gaston, Molwyn, Robin are NOT the ALP. They are merely "men" who have found themselves charged, at this time in our history, with the responsibility of continuing the work started by committed men and women of yesteryear - a task at which they continue to fail miserably. Once the Party finds the deserving men and women to continue to great work started by our early heroes, the ALP will prove itself the answer to our interrupted peace, progress and prosperity
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RE: ALP is not the Answer

#22 Maria V » 2012-04-10 21:31

WOw ! Steve finally made a comment without calling Gaston's name. "They are Paranoid by Gaston's presence, his strength of character and his impressive track record and integrity". Well said Fred.
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Maria V

@ WAFFLE

#21 STEVE » 2012-04-10 19:55

I COULD TELL YOU WHO IS NOT GUILTY (SO FAR). "He testified that he has known the Claimant from about 1977 and that he did not know the Claimant to be convicted of any crime in Antigua. He added that as far as he was aware, the Claimant has not been convicted on account of perverting the course of justice by placing injunctions to prevent persons getting into his bank accounts, and that the Claimant "has never been charged far less convicted" with regards to the Medical Benefits Scandal or the Airport Resurfacing Scandal or the Columbia Gun Running Scandal or with respect to the Southern Developers Scheme. JUST SO THAT YOU KNOW WAFFLES THAT WAS JUSTIN SIMON TESTIFYING AT THE LIBEL CASE BALDWIN SPENCER VS LESTER BIRD. Guess who won the case waffles? If you just do a little reading you would see that the information is available.
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@HC

#20 Dig It » 2012-04-10 16:57

HC, even if Magic conducted a "poll" they will be some high "rank-and-file" that will tell you and the world that it is "overstated." Just like the actual "unemployment" figures, most of us know we are in a "guesstimate" state of mind! Therefore, getting "real-statistics" is like a "Hari-Kari," especially, to those that hurt that prefer to keep the m** from the "truth!" HC, let's us deal with the present "quagmire" because most of us know the Captain handling the wheel is still "learning-to-drive," and, we know the opposition has to take some "brush-up" lessons before they try to take over the wheel! At the end of the day, the electrorates are the "real" poll!
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Dig It

Party differences

#19 jeb » 2012-04-10 16:36

Political parties have a different position on where they stand on the political scale. Simply put, western differences are usually the size of government. One side believes in massive govt. programs and spending. The other side promotes limited govt. thereby allowing free enterprise to work...right of centre democratic supports FDI, free enterprise and smaller taxation to allow private business to thrive and produce employment in that sector. The liberal side believes in big govt., endless govt. programs and controls which kills local investment and eliminates FDI; the result being massive taxation which quickly shrinks resulting in poverty and unmanageable debt (A&B now). I see UPP as a (corrupt) tax to death failure and ALP as supporting free enterprise with tax incentives. BS (et al) have displayed an incompetence and insolence that, IMO, is an embar**ment to this country. I see MP Joseph & co. taking a methodical, rational and educated stand on the issues. Have not seen asinine behaviour coming from the ALP side. I believe, with choice of 2, the ALP has the ability to save A&B IF they can establish daily integrity and ethics.
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MAGIC

#18 HC » 2012-04-10 15:22

Dont you think you should have done some sort of poll before making such assumptions,I challenge you and anyone else on carib arena to do a poll with individuals from all different walk of life,lets try to support our arguments with facts, try to get from these persons the feel of how they life is today as compared with even 6yrs ago, lets see what percent saw improvement as to those who has seen a down spiral,i think only then can a true **ment be made,and parties be compared,i know there will be a shocking revelation to people like Magic,because he will realize that he will someday again live under the alp, because no way under God blue sky will antigua people put back the upp,if they did not steal the elections in 2009,they would be goners after five yrs. Please do the poll and get the facts.
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RE: ALP is not the Answer

#17 Vere C. Bird III » 2012-04-10 14:57

I am my own leader!!

[youtube]http://youtu.be/ySuC67Rt5aQ[/youtube]
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Vere C. Bird III

@Magic - THE SOLUTION IS AN EDFIED ELECTORATE....

#16 YOUTH ELIJAH » 2012-04-10 14:38

Magic I couldn't agree with you more... but I'd say that you forgot to add that ALP nor UPP nor OND nor Congress nor BLP nor BPM or any other party is the answer to Antigua and Barbuda ongoing problem with good governance...

THE SOLUTION IS AN EDUCATED / EDIFIED ELECTORATE!!!!

The electorate keeps on getting duped & feed misinformation from political parties and even the media (even in this very article) that our politics calls for the people to vote for political parties when we suppose to actually vote for representatives who are to come together to form GOVERNMENT...

If asked the average or even an experienced voter, would tell you that Parliament is suppose to have government and opposition, which is so not the case. Ref A&B - Constitution - (Section 79, # 7)

It suppose to have representatives, ever wonder why the lower is called House of Representatives??.. hmmm :-*

I say time for the electorate to vote for the Prime Minister and kick other MPs out of Cabinet so they can do what they were elected to do Legislate!!!
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YOUTH ELIJAH

RE: ALP is not the Answer

#15 Fred » 2012-04-10 11:55

Let us all be fair, the recent public spats were all initiated by the Leader, Hon. Lester Bird, the same person who we give the credit for keeping the party together. perhaps its Lester who is keeping the party divided to ensure his own relevance and have people like steve tearing into Gaston everytime.
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Fred

Opposition is wounded but not out!

#14 Dig It » 2012-04-10 11:47

There is no secret that the ALP has "internal fighting" within the party! I do believe all parties do, it is just that it is shown more in the ALP because of a few party members who are "hungry" for "power-and-authority " at "any means necessary!" This "gripe" in the public domain, I, believe, hinders the opposition efforts to mobilize effectively, especially, in grabbing independents support. Yet, again, the ALP hasn't shown that it is a better "option" than the UPP! With two years to go in the general elections, the opposition should get its "house" in order, and, start talking about "sound" solutions to the economy, as the ruling party has "no clue" to stop this "sinking ship." After eight years in office, and, little\nil is show for it, the PM and his cronies really think they haven't lost a majority of support! It would surely be a "miracle" if they would win (thief) the 2014 elections, all because the ALP fails to "unite" and put forward the "best candidates" to challenge them! We now know that the GOAB will not blame Lorna Simon or Sir Watt, if they lose the election! Let's hope they "blame" all the measures they put in place at the ABEC that comes back to haunt them!
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Dig It

RE: ALP is not the Answer

#13 Fred » 2012-04-10 11:41

Gaston is not the divisive element in the party. This is a man who differs but does not hate or carry malice and is very approachable. It is "hungry" people like Steve (Patrick) and a couple of bad minded and envious leadership aspirants and their handful of supporters who seek to tear down Gaston to destroy his leadership ambitions. Note that Gaston is never the aggressor and that only occasionally he will push back.

I have listened to Weston berating the man in the most evil manner on the radio almost daily and he never responds. His detractors are paranoid by his presence, his strength of character and his impressive track record and integrity. I have heard him assured and reassured the leader and others in the ALP for the last two years that he is not challenging for the leadership. Even when the man is playing it cool, keeping a low profile, they are still fearful and envious. They can try but they cant stop him form leading the country.
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Fred

So what is the solution

#12 Who cares » 2012-04-10 11:02

I could not agree with you more, but what is the solution? If there was an election today UPP and ALP would be my only choices, although I would support just about anyone or anything else.
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Who cares

DadliMan

#11 tenman » 2012-04-10 10:33

DadliMan, did not see your comment until awhile ago. You hit the nail on the head. Many of the persons in the UPP who are demanding LB leave recognize what you have. I have heard even Chaku smilingly make the call for Bird to leave the scene. In addition, it also makes it easier for the great doctor to win the rural east seat. GB has to do a better job at unifying the membership if he wishes to lead the party.
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tenman

PURGE THE ALP

#10 THE GODFATHER » 2012-04-10 10:23

Lester Bird does no have the credibility to lead, neither the strength to endure the 2014 election, something will give. It is time for the old heads to take a back seat, people do not want to see Lester Bird leading Antigua and Barbuda again.

There maybe an implosion, and if that happens, the young generals will take the lead, leaving the past behind them. Within the ALP there needs to be drastic changes of several candidates, purge the ALP of oppurtunist and dead beats, start afresh.

And it is time for genuine people to take over politics, ensure progressive development, end political disunity and the partisan charade.
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THE GODFATHER

RE: ALP is not the Answer

#9 alp to me bone » 2012-04-10 09:57

Magic, I am sure if you were to do a poll the majority would tell you that they prefer the ALP "with all its problems" to a 2014 Baldwin Spencer as PM.
I have heard persons who have been hard core UPP supporters say that they stood in rain in 2004 to take out ALP and right now they will stand in fire to take out UPP.
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alp to me bone

RE: ALP is not the Answer

#8 ANTIGUAN WOMAN » 2012-04-10 09:53

A return of the UPP in 2014 will not mean a defeat for the ALP,it will mean disater for ANU/BAR.
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ANTIGUAN WOMAN

my view

#7 tenman » 2012-04-10 09:29

Yes some prefer to beleive that LB is leading the ALP because he likes power, however the other possibility is that without him the party may break apart. As the article hinted there are others who wish for power. These persons though they will acquiesce to LB may not do the same for someone else, especially someone younger than them. I based this **sment on what happened after the 2004 election when the party seemed to be in civil war mode. It was when Bird stepped up and took leadership and made Browne the deputy, when things started to almost quiet down. Bird himself has stated that it is his wish that Browne would lead the party when he finally leaves the scene. Lets hope they have learned from the failed Saint Lucian experiment where Sir John Compton (UWP) left a weak structure when he died. Paradoxically, there are too many similarities between Stevenson King (former SLP PM) and Baldwin Spencer as far as weak leadership.

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tenman

RE: ALP is not the Answer

#6 your local hero » 2012-04-10 09:27

A very well thought out article, but I have a broblem, it will take more than 2 years for the ALP to get their act together, another problem is WE DO NOT TRUST THE ALP, both nparties need new blood. We are tired of Robin, Cutie, Molwyn, and Lester. Lester needs to save a little face and retire now.

We are in desperate need of another party. I am/was a supporter of he UPP, but my goodness, they are totally clueless especially John Maginley.

2014 is just around the corner, lets see some frsh faces in politics.
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your local hero

RE: ALP is not the Answer

#5 DadliMan » 2012-04-10 09:25

Magic, while you make some valid points, I really think that Lester Bird is holding the ALP together right now. There is a significant amount of in-fighting, and if he were to step down today, the party would probably break up into different pieces.

I supported the view that Lester should move on to play the role of an elder statesman and mentor the young and up-coming politicians. However, while I like Gaston, I think he has done some serious damage to his leadership aspirations. A leader must be a unifying force, and Gaston has proven that he cannot play that role.

As for the ALP as an opposition party, they have proven that they are probably the worst opposition party anywhere in the world. They are as inept an opposition party as the UPP is as a ruling party.
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DadliMan

Change

#4 Skyewill » 2012-04-10 08:43

Because we have what we have and right now , if there was an election today the people will have only the 2 choices. Because change is the only way to achieve success. The elder States men in the ALP should prune the Upcoming Gaston and Maginley and Samantha and empower them to lead the party in a new direction. If they really love heir country they will become advisors and let brand new ideas and fresh move the country forward. UPP leadership by now should know the old okidoke won't work and many have lost confidence and a new direction is in order there also
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@ Steve

#3 Waffle! » 2012-04-10 08:42

It seems you have drunk too much of the red Koolaid! Thank God it will be independents who decide this election and not mental midgets such as yourself! Lester lost two elections as leader...how much more he has to lose to finally give up? He is behaving like Panday in Trinidad. Actually Steve, maybe you're really writing on behalf of the UPP?

Lester as leader of the ALP is the UPP's best chance of winning the next General Elections! Steve so who is guilty of the IHI deal? You tell us since you seem to know!
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RE: ALP is not the Answer

#2 Morris » 2012-04-10 06:54

I agree with you Magic, the opposition have not used this opportunity to effectively prepare for governance. The only thing apparently different with the political parties is their color (red & blue); neither seem to have the best interest of the citizens as their guide.
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RE: ALP is not the Answer

#1 STEVE » 2012-04-10 06:42

Magic, I believe you are missing the pellucid point that LESTER BIRD IS A CUT ABOVE (AS A LEADER OF A POLITICAL PARTY) BALDWIN SPENCER. With the "hand" that Lester Bird has to play, I think he is playing it like a master. Following things in Antigua politically Magic, why do you believe Lester would want to maintain a "high" public profile at this time? Magic, do you not see that Gaston "apparent alliance with a certain radio personality, to get his message out secretly" have come back to haunt him? Magic, do you not see that Gaston cannot win the leadership position in an A.L.P. convention? Magic, you should know that IN POLITICS IT IS ALL ABOUT TIMING. Remember these words "THE RIGHT PHYSOCLOGICAL MOMENT"? Gaston’s game is over. In my opinion, he (Gaston) would be bad for Antigua. Does Lester have to go, OF COURSE YES. Does he have to go now? I say no. A NEW LEADER WILL COME FORWARD. Finally, just a question on "Lester legal troubles". AFTER ALL THESE YEARS AND ALL THE BOTCH ATTEMPTS, DO YOU REALLY THINK THE U.P.P. HAS ANY INFORMATION TO CONVICT LESTER WITH? I say no. What do you say?
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Ian 'Magic' Hughes

Ian 'Magic' Hughes is an Antiguan Journalist.






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