Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace has called on the Ralph Gonsalves government to make a statement amidst rumours that Edson Augustus, deputy St. Vincent and the Grenadines’ New York Consul, is no longer in his post.
“For the last few days in particular, we are hearing grumblings coming out of New York in relation to the St. Vincent mission there,” Eustace said.
“It seems that something has happened and what I am hearing could redound not to the benefit, but shame to St. Vincent and the Grenadines,” Eustace said Monday on his weekly radio programme.
“And I would hope that some time today, the Government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines can clear the air to stop all these rumours … and to give us the assurance that all senior staff are still in place,” Eustace further said.
“I know other persons would have heard it and I don’t want to just accept it by what I hear on the street,” said Eustace, a former prime minister.
“I’d like the government to give a very clear position, probably better off today to stop some of the rumours that are circulating on this matter and I am really looking forward to hearing something about that,” Eustace further said.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs told I-Witness News on Monday that the foreign secretary, Sen. Camillo Gonsalves, was in a meeting.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Nathaniel Williams was on the telephone when I-Witness News called his office twice on Monday, and on the third attempt, his staff said he had gone to an emergency meeting and will be asked return our call when the meeting ends.
The office of the Prime Minister also said that Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves was in a meeting.
It was not clear whether the three officials were attending the same meeting.
Meanwhile, the Consulate in New York, when asked on Monday whether Augustus was still a member of the staff, directed I-Witness News to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Kingstown.
A staff member of the Ministry told I-Witness News that only the Permanent Secretary or the Minister can answer that question.
Augustus was appointed a diplomat in May 2011, three months after he resigned as a Seventh Day Adventists pastor.
Certain allegations were made against him ahead of the resignation, but he declined to comment on them.