The government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines says that it will not treat its Security Council seat in a transactional manner.
“Now, I want to tell you upfront that I am not adopting and the government is not adopting a transactional approach. We are not telling you that St. Vincent is going to get money because it is going on the Security Council; that’s not the reason,” Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves said in Argyle on Sunday on his return from the United Nations.
He was addressing some citizens’ concern about the benefits of Kingstown being elected for a two-year term with holding a non-permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council, beginning Jan. 1. 2020.
“The reason is to be there at the table with a perspective of a small island developing state from the Caribbean and that by being there, we can contribute to peace and security in the world, which will redound to the advantage of all of us, including St. Vincent and the Grenadines,” said Gonsalves, who went to the United Nations last week Wednesday for a final lobby ahead of Friday’s vote.
“If you have a war in the Middle East, the prices of oils go up, your fuel surcharge goes up, your commodities become more expensive – an example; there are many others,” he told an event attended by a few hundred persons to welcome him and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sir Louis Straker back to SVG after the historical vote.
“But there is absolutely no doubt that because of the prestige that St. Vincent and the Grenadines has attained to become the smallest country ever to sit on the Security Council, you don’t need much imagination to see that benefits will accrue, but I am not going to be tempted, and this government is not going to be reduced to treating this matter in transactional terms. The good lord taught us man shall not live by bread alone,” Gonsalves said.
The prime minister said that all over the world since Friday, the issue arising out of the UN was the election of SVG to the Security Council.
SVG, a multi-island nation of 150 square miles and 110,000 residents, has become the smallest country by mass and population, to ever be elected to the UN Security Council,
“I believe that there is no matter, no subject which has come before St. Vincent and the Grenadines or arising from St. Vincent and the Grenadines which has attracted so much press internationally about St. Vincent and the Grenadines. All over the world people are talking about St. Vincent and the Grenadines. You go online; you see it because this is an immense achievement.”