Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves, centre, along with Camillo Gonsalves, right, and Saboto Caesar at a press conference last September. (iWN file photo)

Political leader of the Unity Labour Party, Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves might have lost one of the two men that political observers say could replace him in both those capacities.

The prime minister told a rally on Saturday that founder of the main opposition New Democratic Party, former Prime Minister Sir James Mitchell suggested over a year ago that either Minister of Agriculture Saboto Caesar or Minister of Finance, Camillo Gonsalves, the prime minister’s son, join the NDP.

Gonsalves made the revelation on Saturday at the rally in Argyle to mark the first anniversary of the opening of the Argyle International Airport.

“Camillo and Saboto were in Bequia and son Mitchell knew they were there and asked them to come for lunch by him. So they went,” Gonsalves said.

“They sit down and you know Son Mitchell is a fella, Sir James is a fella, even when he doh have any cards to play, he tell yo’ ah putting me cards on the table. He’s that kinda man.

“So he tell Camillo and Saboto I putting my cards on the table, just over a year ago, when Eustace was still leader of the NDP,” the prime minister said.

Camillo Gonsalves, left, and Saboto Caesar. (iWN photos)

In November 2016, Member of Parliament for the Northern Grenadines, Godwin Friday, replaced his East Kingstown colleague, Arnhim Eustace as president of the NDP and Leader of the Opposition.

Continuing his story, Gonsalves said:

“He (Sir James) said, ‘Listen to me. I’m interested in this country.’ And I believe that,” Gonsalves commented.

“And he said, ‘Eustace is not a leader, Friday is not a leader and they don’t have anybody in the NDP to lead.’ He say, ‘But the ULP, you all have an abundance of riches.’ So he say, ‘My idea, it doesn’t matter [to] me which one of you — Camillo, you or Saboto, you — one you come to say you coming to the NDP and I will help to mek you leader so that for the next 20 years, St. Vincent will have two good leaders, one leading NDP and one leading ULP.’

“You see, well Sabby and Camillo say, ‘no, no, no, no, no. It means that on the basis of what you say, we will be there for another 20 years.’

“So, I don’t know what get into him all of sudden to come out and talk,” Gonsalves said.

On Wednesday, Sir James, in an interview on Boom FM was critical of government lawmakers’ move to block, on Jan. 31, debate on a motion of no confidence brought against the government.

He presented the development as undiplomatic.

Former Prime Minister Sir James Mitchell speaking at an event in Kingstown last October. (iWN photo)

The retired politician was also very critical of the handling of the saga involving former model Yugge Farrell, who has alleged that she had a years’ long extramarital relationship with Camillo.

Farrell spent most of January in court-ordered psychiatric evaluation after being charged with using abusing language to Camillo’s wife, Karen Duncan-Gonsalves in Kingstown on Jan. 4.

She has been granted EC$1,000 bail and will return to court on Dec. 17 for trial.

On Saturday, Gonsalves tried to contextualise Sir James’ comments on radio last Wednesday.

“I don’t know if [it] is because it’s the anniversary for the airport and he (Sir James) has said in his book that his major policy disappointment in office is that he didn’t do anything for airport development on St. Vincent,” Gonsalves said of his predecessor, who left office after 17 years, in October 2000, ahead of the election in March 2001, which the NDP lost under Eustace’s leadership.

If either Caesar or the younger Gonsalves had joined the NDP, it would have meant that the ULP administration would have fallen since it only enjoys a one-seat majority in the 15-member Parliament.

11 replies on “Sir James asked Saboto, Camillo to join NDP — PM”

    1. Or maybe we should ask…How much did Sir James have to drink at the time? The NDP has certainly more potential leaders than the ULP…according to what has been demonstrated. We have not seen ANY potential in the ULP because our Prime Minister does not allow any of them to propose anything without it coming from him. What have we heard from the ULP big-shots? We had a government Confession Booth to compete with the Catholics. We had a proposal from the Health department to bring in the most UNHEALTHY GMOs to destroy the health of the people but get lots of money to the politicians from the Monsanto Corporation. We heard some good things from Soboto but Patrick Ferrari also told us about the invisible patrol boats proposed to patrol the Bequia harbour. We were told we would all be rich if we grow Butternut Squash. Then there is Camillo…Nothing of substance has ever come from Camillo, and he is the one being forced upon us.There is more but I made my point.

  1. That is POLITICS, nothing unusual as those with the wisest strategy wins while you people make enemies amongst your families and friends and they socialize together, enjoy the luxuries and amuse themselves watching the ‘Perplexities’

  2. What is this nonsense are trying to fool the people with now? Sir James has no say in the NDP so why would he be making such a suggestion? Furthermore, if Sir James make such a suggestion, it is telling you that he does not believe in your government, plain and simple. Talk about what you have done to follow in the footsteps of Sir James.

  3. Well it would be the general contention here with the exception of Elma who still believes he is Christ returned, that he is being untruthful.

    1. I am not too religious so someone can correct me if I am wrong here: I have heard a description of the Anti-Christ. Some (many Orthodox Christians) say the Book of Ester is the basis of the Anti-Christ Doctrine. It essentially teaches many things that Jesus was against. No wonder our Prime Minister loves the Book of Ester.

  4. God is not mentioned even once in the book of Esther. There are two books in the scriptures, the book of Ruth and the book of Esther, which no one has any idea who wrote. The book of Esther contains a wealth of information relative to Israel and the nations, having to do mainly with activity occurring at the end of and following the Times of the Gentiles.

    The book of Esther is said by some scholars to be “antisemitic”, who I think are misguided. The book of Esther tells of an enemy that wished for the annihilation of all Jews. Esther 3:13 reads
    “And the letters were sent by posts into all the king’s provinces, to destroy, to kill, and to cause to perish, all Jews, both young and old, little children and women, in one day, even upon the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar, and to take the spoil of them for a prey.”

    The book is said to be the hand book of the German Nazi Party during World War II. So if you are saying DREGs constantly quotes from it, there must lay another story about the man. That is quite surprising seeing as the Gonsalves of the Portuguese Island of Maderia were in fact secret Jews, DREGs ancestors were Jews, that is an historical fact.

    1. Thanks Simon. I know the Nazis had a scorched earth policy when they retreated from Russia. I have heard that too is in the Book of Esther. Nevertheless it was mainly the Russians, with heavy losses, that defeated the Nazis, not so much the West. It is like today: The USA claims to have defeated ISIS when in fact they have been supporting ISIS, helping them to become much stronger and buying the stolen Syrian oil through Goldman Sachs banks….until the Russians entered Syria, then ISIS began to be wiped out, in spite of all the weapons, poisonous gas and money the US has been giving them.
      You will not hear that on Corporate Media!

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