Not an Illegal but an Accidental Prime Minister
Like thousands of fair minded and rational thinking Dominicans at home and abroad, I was disappointed by the ECSC's vindication of Roosevelt Skerrit and Petter St. Jean in the dual citizenship case. The court's huge mistake is a disservice to our people and country. But as the final arbiter in such matters, we have to accept the court's decision and move on.
But moving on means showing leadership and humility by all especially the leader of the government. Adding insult to injury, on the night of the court's verdict, Skerrit and his crew organized a mass rally in Lagoon to celebrate his victory. I was hoping what we would hear a leadership and conciliatory message from Skerrit. Instead he made a mockery of a unique opportunity to unite the nation. He cast himself as an arrogant, larger-than-life character.
He demonstrated why many do not consider him the Prime Minister but rather as the occupier of the Prime Minister's office. Listening to Skerrit's pitiful nonsense brought tears to one of my friend's eyes as he felt sorry for our island home. Politics is a contact sport and now and again one has to hit the enemy as hard as they can. But also, as the PM, one has to have timing, dignity, class, awareness and respect for that high office. Skerrit displayed none of these qualities and class. We can surely do and deserve much better than that.
On the night that Rome selected a Pope with ultimate humility to lead its 1.2 billion followers, Skerrit came out as an insecure and angry schoolyard bully who does not care or knows any better. He barked about wiping his opponents out with a clean sweep at the polls just like his best friend forever (BFF), PM Keith Mitchell did in Grenada. His belligerent tone made him sound like Hulk Hogan preparing for a WWF caged tag team match with PM Mitchell as his partner.
I am sure Dr. Mitchell will distance himself from Skerrit's diatribe. The 66 year old former university math's professor who has been defeated once in general elections is now older, more dignified and wiser with more humility. Unlike Skerrit, and like President Obama, PM Mitchell cried openly and was visibly overwhelmed before thousands of his supporters on election night in St. Georges. Skerrit's lieutenant, Emanuel Nanthan, went further and said that Dominica has never and will never have an illegal PM and Skerrit was never an illegal PM. Mr. G. O.N. Emanuel would probably disagree with that premise. Why, after two years, the Roosevelt police force (better known as the Dominica Police Force) has not arrested the perpetrators who fire-bombed Mr. Emanuel's house in spite of overwhelming evidence? Mr. Nathan can you please ask the 'now legal' PM (not the police commissioner) to provide an update on the investigation?
If Skerrit is not and has never been an illegal PM then he has always been an accidental one. Late PMs Pierro and Rosie (RIP) fought the good fight for over 30 years only to die in office. Enter Skerrit who has never struggled politically to leap frog over everyone else and become PM. He consolidated the office by patronage (e.g. Red Clinic) and with his own allegedly misguided disrespect and interpretation of the laws of the land.
During Skerrit's tantrum in Lagoon, he summoned folks to return to their communities to prepare and work. Well, let's to go back to La Plaine and the other two men who were in the middle of the court mêlée. Mr. Ron Green of the UWP and a guy I grew up with in the La Plaine valley and who is today a Born- Again Christian, Mr. Petter St. Jean of The DLP. My advice for both Ron and Petter is to hold a holy mass (not a mass rally) in the small Catholic church to ask God for healing for our small rural community which is burdened and divided by politics. 'Brother' St. Jean, you will recall that it was in that small church we first learned about forgiveness, kindness, unity, morality, respect and humility. As a man of God and the bible 'Brother' St. Jean, can I bet my house and land that you will agree and embrace this strong recommendation? La Plaine simply cannot continue to languish in the never ending festival of political stupidity and bitter division perpetrated by self serving politicians.
If this much-needed mass could be arranged, my only reservation is that an invitation should not be extended to Skerrit and his crew. Their presence will only instigate and further divide our rural community. After the mass the real game of decent political campaigning can begin and may the better man wins. We owe it to our people and our La Plaine forefathers on whose shoulders we stand on. Leaders like Mr. Pierre Colaire, Mr. Rupert Green, Mr.Swilo St. Jean and my grandfather, Mr. Burton Allan, the village's late historian and others who have left us.
The hubristic actions and behaviours of heads of state and tyrants eventually lead to their Waterloos. To name a few, General Noriega in Panama, Gaddafi, Mobutu in the Congo, Duvalier, Nixon, Hitler, Napoleon, Milosevic in Yugoslavia, Idi Amin and Mubarak. PM Patrick John went from the big house at Morne Bruce to the 'bigger house' at Stock Farm when his luck ran out. Dominicans, let's organize, mobilize, close ranks, be patient and pray diligently for the peaceful dismissal of this accidental occupier of our Prime Minister's office. History is on our side.