"Pa Kité Yo Pwan Domnik Hòd Nous"
Independence Message by Hon. Lennox Linton, Parliamentary Opposition Leader
My Nature Island Brothers and Sisters:
Our Dominican Dream is about that collection of nature island blessings which is so special to us that on one hand we do not want to leave it; and on the other hand, we yearn to come back to it whenever circumstances force us to leave it. It is ours. And we don't want it to be taken away from us.
That is why for five decades we have pleaded in song to our collective patriotic responsibility: "Pa Kité Yo Pwan Domnik Hòd Nous".
We dream of Dominica First… we dream of Dominica for Dominicans at home and abroad. The dream is:
To be a free, healthy, happy person enjoying peace, growth and prosperity in the best place to live, the best place to work and the best place to enjoy life.
That's all we ever wanted. That's all we wanted to secure for ourselves as an independent country in the family of nations. Sadly, after 44 years of independence, we are less independent now than we were at the start of the journey in 1978.
And so, as we welcome our visiting friends and family members… as we enjoy the food, drink, music and nature island experiences that make us special, let us all join in the collective responsibility to ensure that as "One Dominica (and) One People (with) One Vision, we build a truly independent country in which:
-The children of Dominica enjoy their God given freedom of the human spirit to be who they want to be, earn and spend their own money, accumulate wealth, provide for their families and extend their influence in the world.
-The system of governance allows citizens to work, create and grow enterprise and participate in the build out of the national development infrastructure without fear or favor affection or ill will.
-Nature island citizen engagement and participation brings government, people, businesses, civil society groups and neighborhoods in a collective effort to make Dominica the real, authentic, one and only Nature Island of the World.
-Government of the people, by the people, for the people is the result of Free and fair elections with integrity untainted by bribery, treating, fraud and other illegalities and irregularities. We must take heed and act diligently on the July 2022 advice of the Caribbean Court of Justice: "There remain areas of grave concern about how the process of these (2019) elections was conducted. Future elections in Dominica ought not to proceed with these or similar taints".
Regrettably, in the last two decades we have been slipping deeper and deeper into the disgraces of a failed independent state where control of the economy and social service delivery system has been surrendered to foreigners. So compromised is our independence that there is even a ban on mentioning the names of these foreign controllers in debates among the elected representatives of the One People of Dominica about the affairs of One Dominica in Parliament - the highest decision-making body of One Dominica.
While we stand aside and look, misleaders in government are using our own resources to take us back into the dark days of colonialism for their personal gain.
One Dominica, One People, One Vision?
With billions of dollars belonging to the One People of One Dominica under private control in overseas bank accounts, the ruling party, under instructions from its foreign masters, has refused to provide an adequate package of financial assistance for the One People of One Dominica who are losing their jobs, their businesses, their means of livelihood. But the ruling party is taking care of its own at the expense of a suffering nation. In the grip of the Covid triggered economic crisis, over 70 thousand dollars per month of poor people's money to rent a mansion for the Prime Minister while government cries broke.
The billion-dollar contract for an international airport for the One People of One Dominica to be paid for by the One People of One Dominica was granted by a foreigner to a foreign company on foreign soil. Not one of the people of One Dominica was present.
There is no bigger mockery of our independence 44 years later than this cruel hand-over of Dominica's financial resources to foreign controllers of the ruling party. The sale of our passports, the proud emblem of citizenship, the very element within our national revenue stream intended to improve our quality of life, is being used to cripple the character of our nation and cast the darkest clouds over our Nature Island space.
I ask again, haven't we had enough independence celebrations in organized hypocrisy and self-hate?
In the four-year period ending June 30th, 2020, Dominican citizenship has been sold to 23,794 persons around the world. 23,794 citizenships for an investment of 5.4 billion dollars. Money belonging to the One People of One Dominica from the sale of their passports. Money which the constitution, the supreme law of Dominica, requires to be deposited in and spent from the consolidated fund of Dominica.
But of the 5.4 billion dollars of the people's money – 5,400 million dollars – only 1.2 billion was placed in the consolidated fund. 4.2 billion – 4,200 million is in private accounts outside of Dominica, an ATM for leaders of the ruling party and the foreign friends who control them.
One Dominica, One People, One Vision?
In this day and age, impoverished citizens yearning for a better life are being enslaved by ruling party puppets of their passport selling masters behind the bars of need for food, clothing, and shelter assistance provided by the State, while foreigners are allowed to plunder hundreds of millions from the public purse with impunity.
This is no longer a One Dominica economy for the One People of Dominica; it is emerging as a modern-day slave plantation organized by ruling party puppets of their foreign masters for their exclusive wealth creation benefit.
-the struggle to survive in Dominica is getting harder and harder
-there are too many Dominicans trapped in Poverty & Dependency
-no attempts to reverse the chronic Youth Unemployment Crisis -nothing is happening to deal with Low Wages, Rising Cost of Living
Because the strategic plan of the ruling party is to keep the people of Dominica poor, dependent and enslaved to massa's will.
One Dominica, One People, One Vision?
The Independence to run our own affairs that we gleefully embraced on November 3rd, 1978, is working wonders for the multi-billion-dollar benefit of the foreign friends of the ruling party regime. It is not working for the farmers, the fishermen, the nurses, the teachers, the police officers, the public officers, the doctors, the lawyers, the business men and women, the shop keepers, the disappearing middle class, the clerks, the carpenters, the masons, the electricians, the plumbers, the rich, the poor, the unemployed, the youth, the elderly, the leaders of church… The nature island people of Dominica from all walks of life, know and understand that in the last 20 years we have been reversing into the dark ages where our ancestors fought against the odds for our freedom… for a Dominica for all Dominicans… for lives that matter.
Dominica is being taken away from us.
"Pa Kité Yo Pwan Domnik Hòd Nous".
Let us stand for right and save our country. Let us stand resolute in the conviction that the dream of independence - the hope for freedom, happiness, truth, righteousness, justice and human dignity - will be relentlessly pursued and never abandoned in our Nature Island to the world.
In the immortal dream of our national anthem, we call the sons and daughters of this gem beyond compare to embrace the vision of hope that invites us to toil with hearts and hands and voices… to prosper and sound the call "in which everyone rejoices All for each and each for all…"