The opposition activist who was arrested and slapped with five charges during a protest on Friday says the move was a calculated one by state authorities.
The activist, Colin “Hitman” Graham, however, said he is not deterred.
“It was a very strategic move by the authorities to make sure I was removed from the protest early this morning. It was a wilful act to make sure that persons didn’t see me in the protest. But it didn’t deter the protesters,” Graham said on NICE Radio late Friday night after his release from police custody.
“Vincentians at home and abroad, I need you to understand that Rome was not built in a day. The struggle will still continue to liberate not just one set of people in this country but all the people,” said Graham, who is an announcer at Hot FM.
“The victory we are seeking and fighting for is not going to come overnight. We have to keep pressing on; we have to keep applying the pressure. We can’t be selfish and fight for ourselves. We have to fight for every Vincentian,” the activist for the New Democratic Party (NDP) said.
He thanked the persons who rallied with him by waiting outside of the Central Police Station in Kingstown until he was released on bail.
A group calling itself “We the People” organised Friday’s protest against the Ralph Gonsalves Unity Labour Party (ULP) government and its policies.
Like the NDP, the group is also claiming that the Dec. 9 general elections were stolen from the NDP, which electoral say lost by one seat to the ULP — which was returned for a fourth consecutive term in office.
Graham urged his supporters to continue to stand up with him and the other protesters “who’re standing up and fighting and speaking out in the name of justice, democracy and fairness for every Vincentian.
“We have to fight to continue fighting for this in the most peaceful manner, but, at the same day, not bending and wavering to the likes of an administration that seeks to make sure that they have persons living in fear to air their own view, air their voices and let their opinions be heard even if it is criticising the present administration. We all should be free to criticise our leaders.”
Graham thanked the members of the NDP who visited him at the police station and the other person who sent best wishes.
“I want to say to you tonight that I am not going to give up. I am going to be continue speaking out and standing up for what I know is right, which is justice, fairness, freeness for every Vincentian,” he said.
“Victory will not come over night. We have to continue to press gas and keep the pressure on,” he said.
Graham is expected to appear in court on Tuesday to answer five traffic charges and one relating to causing inconvenience to the public.