ST. VINCENT:- Former senator for the opposition New Democratic Party (NDP), Gerard “Rasum” Shallow, has publicly endorsed the ruling Unity Labour Party (ULP) ahead of general elections due by next March.
“It is only … those who are of a myopic view, it is only those who are blinded by lies, hatred, and bad mind that will say that NDP is good,” Shallow said of the party he once represented in Parliament.
“But, if they say that NDP is good, I want to tell you this, the Green Party is better. But hear something, the Unity Labour Party is incomparably and simply the best,” he added at a ULP rally in Marriaqua on Sunday, Oct. 10.
The Green Party won 37 votes, or 0.064 per cent of the ballots cast in the December 2005 general elections, while the NDP garnered 44.46 per cent of the vote to the ULP’s 55.47 per cent.
The ULP won 12 seats to the ULP’s three in the 15 member Parliament, a repeat of the March 2001 results.
Shallow’s comments came as he endorsed ULP candidate and Minster of Education, Girlyn Miguel, who has been representing Marriaqua since 1998 and defeated Shallow, then an NDP candidate, in the 2001 general elections.
“Tonight, I stand proudly as a member, as a supporter, as a lover, as a warrior of the Unity Labour Party. Comrades, first of all, I want to register my unwavering support and commitment to sister Girlyn Miguel, who has been tried and tested and would have passed every time and is making the bid to do it one more time for yet one more term,” said Shallow a teacher, who has since returned to the classroom.
Shallow, a calyposonian, who penned and sang the inspirational “Perseverance”, mentioned the Bible’s exhortation to abhor evil and to cleave to good. (Go to the homepage to subscribe to I Witness-News)
“Listen to me, if you were blind, you would have felt and heard of the advancement made in this country from 2001 to the present time. If you were deaf, you would have seen and felt the advancement and progress brought to us as Vincentians by the Unity Labour Party. If you were dumb, you would have heard and seen the advancement made,” he said.
“So one had got to be of an awful[ly] myopic view, and with absolutely no conscience to close a blind eye and indicate that there’s need for another change in this country. A change from bad to worse? Labour! Labour!” he further said.
Shallow said the ULP is “the only all embracing party” and its policies and programmed are structured and implemented to benefit all Vincentians.
“Whey dey say pastor say? Whey de say parson say?” he said in dialect, a reference to NDP candidate Burton Williams, who used the colloquial expression to say that an NDP administration will meet the needs of its supporters first.
NDP president and opposition leader Arnhim Eustace has since said that Williams’ statement did not reflect the policy of the NDP.
“Has there ever been evidence in this country since 2001 of any favouritism granted to anyone?” Shallow said, adding that the ULP is a party of unity and progress.
He told ULP supporters that it was their responsibility “to preserve … to protect [and] to defend” St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG).
“It has been the first time … that I have seen beautiful St. Vincent and the Grenadines – Hairouna, land of the blessed – being likened by the New Democratic Party as a fresh kill, and, above are hundreds of vultures, desperate and raven, ready to eat up of our flesh.,” Shallow said.
“They shall not have a taste. They will not be given a chance. They will not be allowed any opportunity to register any presence in the Parliament of St. Vincent and the Grenadines after the upcoming general elections,” he added.
Shallow said he has a passion for Vincentian adding that he knows “they hold the future”.
He said the ULP had created for the nation’s youth “wide ranging opportunities” are “incomparable to anything we would have had in the past”.
“…[S]stay focused and ensure that we do not shatter their dreams, that we do not deny them the privileges granted for them and that we make sure that they achieve the bright future that is ahead of them,” he said.
Shallow did not say why he had fallen out of favour with the NDP, but Minister of Culture Rene Baptiste, in introducing Shallow, said, “He was a member of the NDP. He sat on the benches in Parliament with the NDP and they treated him very poorly.”
Shallow however said: “I want to let you know that I am fair in making comparisons and this is what I want you bear in mind when it is time to make your choice. … We have always been insulted by the New Democratic Party. They took our intelligence and our knowledge for granted so they could tell us any old story and expect us to accept and buy [it] wholesale. Bu t they have better news than that coming, you know. Because, we are waiting and we are giving them the impression that yes, we do believe you, until the day arrives for us to [mark] that X. What are we gonna do? We [are] going vote them out!”