In a speech that belies his frequent pronouncements that politics is not an arm of the entertainment industry, Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves, on Saturday resorted to a Bob Marley song, saying if Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace is “a bullbucka”, he (Gonsalves) is “a duppy conqueror”.
Gonsalves entertained the large crowd at the Miss Unity Youths pageant at Victoria Park with his political picong, singing and dancing, while his potlical opponent, Leader of the Opposition, Arnhim Eustace, did some dancing of his own at the New DEmocratic Party’s rally in Keartons that same night.
He said the show — in which 16 young ladies competed for the crown — was not only to showcase beauty and talent of the contestants, but to show solidarity and love, which he said are features of the governance of his Unity Labour Party (ULP).
“We have to look out for one another. And over the next five years we have to look out for each other more than even before,” Gonsalves said as the DJ played Ben E. King’s “Stand by Me.”
“Stand by me, stand by the ULP,” Gonsalves said.
Thousands of persons turned out to the free show, which featured Jamaican act, Christopher Martin.
Gonsalves told patrons that the event was organised mainly by the youth with support of constituency councils and the party’s secretariat.
He said the show was so well organised that the state-owned Carnival Development Corporation should hire the ULP to organise its queen show, adding that the crowd at Victoria Park was more akin to Soca Monarch — the Carnival event that attracts the largest crowd.
The ULP is seeking an historic fourth consecutive term in office in elections expected before year-end, and Gonsalves said he was confident of victory.
Once Labour people come out to vote, the ULP will win all the seats in St. Vincent and will go for the Southern Grenadines and the Northern Grenadines, he said.
The two Grenadine constituencies have remained bastions of the New Democratic Party, remaining faithful to the party while all the seats in St. Vincent, except East Kingstown, dumped the NDP for the ULP in 2001.
The NDP wooed back four constituencies in 2010, bringing to seven the number of seats it holds in Parliament — one less than the ULP.
Gonsalves said NDP leader Leader of the Opposition Arnhim Eustace, is speaking as if he is a “bullbucka”.
“If he a bullbucka, I’m a duppy conqueror,” Gonsalves said, quoting Marley’s “Duppy Conqueror”.
“We are going to make sure that a campaign is waged in this country from now until election day, the likes of which have never been seen in St. Vincent and the Grenadines,” Gonsalves said.