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Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves speaking at a press conference in Kingstown on Monday, May 27, 2024.
Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves speaking at a press conference in Kingstown on Monday, May 27, 2024.
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The opposition New Democratic Party is complaining about “lawlessness” in the form of the high homicide count but erected a billboard quoting the homicide count without first getting the permission of the Physical Planning Board, as required by law, says Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves.

Gonsalves, speaking on WE FM, said that when there was a discussion about his Unity Labour Party (ULP) billboards at Frenches Gate, he had noted that they were there with the permission of the Physical Planning Board.

“I said every billboard that we have put up, we have sought, planning permission to put them up. And if we put them up on private property, we get permission from the private people,” the prime minister said.

The Planning Board has written to the NDP about the homicide statistics billboard it erected at Gibson Corner, saying it had done so without permission.

The board gave the NDP 24 hours to dismantle the billboard unless it applies for permission.

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“I don’t have anything to do with the planning board writing them, to tell them you must follow the law,” Gonsalves said.

“They say, ‘Man, listen, you put up these billboards. You’re not supposed to put them up without you get permission. Take them down or apply for permission.’

“That’s the law,” said Gonsalves, who is also minister of national security and a lawyer.

“That is how the system works. But they were so hurry and anxious to put them up because they wanted to put up those billboards when the 500 tourist agencies and journalists from all over the world were here,” Gonsalves said, referring to an event that Sandals International was having at its resort in Buccament Bay.

“That’s what they want to do. To prevent the tourists from coming,” Gonsalves said.

Billboard
The NDP’s billboard at Gibson Corner.

However, the NDP has said that the billboard was not geared at visitors but at people who are living in the country.

Gonsalves said, “You think that anybody, that any opposition leader is going to put up a billboard in Montego Bay telling people there’s so much crime in Jamaica, they mustn’t come? Because that is the message. Or in Barbados, or in St. Lucia?”

He said that the NDP was in “total utter desperation.

“And they can twist and dance as much as they want. People have made up their minds that they are unfit to govern because they don’t love this country,” the prime minister said.

“And this Canadian, Lorraine Friday, he ain’t care bout St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and he has put an each-way bet on Canada and St. Vincent and Grenadines,” he further said, referring to the opposition leader, who was born in St. Vincent and the Grenadines dual citizenship because he studied, lived and worked and Canada for years.

“And when the people reject him again, he always got Canada to run to,” Gonsalves said.

Gonsalves said that on the contrary, his son, East St. George MP and Minister of Finance Camillo Gonsalves, who was born in the United States, renounced his US citizenship before getting involved in electoral politics in SVG.

“Camillo didn’t have to give up his American citizenship because Camilo didn’t have to go and swear an allegiance because he would have been born an American,” Gonsalves said.

“Now I don’t see a problem normally, with a person having dual citizenship, but you can’t want to have dual citizenship and want to be prime minister and is not question that he was born in Canada. He applied for it,” Gonsalves said of Friday.

“I’m going to refer to him on an ongoing basis as the Canadian Godwin Friday, the Canadian Lorraine Friday. Because that’s what he is.

“And he shows us in this case, that there is no love for country. Don’t care what he say. You cannot fool anybody else with that. He will jump on his high horse and say I can’t tell him I’m more patriotic than him. Well, if you want to show, give up your Canadian passport, your Canadian citizenship. Renounce it nuh. Give it up. Renounce it,” Gonsalves said.

5 replies on “NDP complains about ‘lawlessness’ but broke planning laws — PM”

  1. Urlan Alexander says:

    We have to be sone real fools. So ee are to beleive that the planning division give the ULP permission to put up billboards all year round?

  2. Did the ULP get planning permission to erect the wooden structure at the HQ? Asking for a friend!!

  3. Take warning says:

    Wen ar yo bin block road , na law ar yo bin break ? ls this place belong to ar yo , ? and wen ar yo bin go gee assuring kiss , da was not law broken?

  4. Pplz yo really believe who dey planning have a choice in d matter of d u*p billboard?

    See how e passionate in belching down d opposition throat but silent towards d crim*n*ls. Use dat same energy to go after d killers it might make a difference. U channeling yo energy in d wrong direction becuz dey not going to stop more billboards coming, d soul of our country is at stake so d truth must b told by all means necessary.

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