Towards the end of February, I was wondering what the caption of my March 2022 article would be – when an announcement on public TV stated that on Sunday February 27, 2022 the NNP would be holding its convention, and that Prime Minister Mia Motley of Barbados and Ms. Akima Paul would be the keynote speakers.

          The comments therefore, in this article is based on the report as provided on the GBN evening newscast of February 28, 2022.

          For starters – let’s begin with the pronouncement by the Prime Minister that he would not be giving the opposition NDC, a single seat at the next general elections – they would have to earn it to get it. (Words to that effect). As far as I can recall the voters rejected the request in the last two (2) referenda by the NNP to change our constitution; so where does the incumbent Prime Minister obtain the authority to hand out seats in any given general election? Was that a subconscious reaction to the tampering of the electoral process? Or as the Grenadian figure of speech so poignantly describes – “that man has more guts than bolee”

          This type of bravado and grandstanding can only have traction with the simple minded audience in attendance, and one wonders what type of effect this have had on the presence of his window dressing – in the person of the Barbados Prime Minister, whose erudite remarks as far as the TV broadcast indicated, was one of a general nature in calling on the regional governments of CARICOM to come together in unity for a stronger and more effective presence on the global stage, which perhaps disappointedly to Dr. Mitchell’s expectation – had very little to do with an insular political convention. – It would have been interesting to hear the keynote speaker – Ms. Akima Paul’s rendition, which unfortunately was not a significant component of the GBN broadcast.

          However, later in the evening of the said February 28th 2022, the GBN’s Beyond the Headlines programme – had in attendance Ms. Emmaline Pierre and Mr. Roland Bolah of the NNP to give their take on the convention, and on the party’s performance to date. As could be expected the praise for the party’s delivery to the Grenadian people after being in office well over 30 years – was profuse; and the tagline: “Experience before Youthfulness” – came through almost like an NNP mantra; in a subtle appeal to return an outmoded party back into office.

          At this moment of reckoning, it is only right and appropriate that WE THE PEOPLE should be the judge and jury in assessing the performance of the NNP and to decide whether Grenada, post-independence has made any significant progress or not. In this regard, in conversation with a prominent Grenadian as few weeks ago, he posed the question: “What local plan over the years has the NNP government provided for the upliftment of Grenada. He continued – “any initiative that one hears about, originates from outside of the country, very often for the foreigner’s benefit (echoes of CBI) – as if Grenadians do not have the brain power for its own indigenous creative development”.

          I had to draw my friend’s attention, that after almost 40 years as the parliamentary representative for the South West constituency, which has remained in the same state of backwardness over the years – Dr. Mitchell in now planning/implementing what he calls a LEGACY PROJECT at the evening of his political career; so the question is asked – “what is the number of years – in obtaining political experience that one must have, before discerning the needs of a community and endeavor to uplift them from a pre-colonial existence, 48 years after independence?”

          This is why a new VISION is required, if Grenada is to take advantage of the opportunities that are available at the beginning of the 3rd decade of the 21st century – “as we aspire build and grow” into “a people in more than name”.

Norris Mitchell

11th March 2022