PM knocks ‘narrow-minded’ perception of SVG

Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves (File photo).

KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent – Persons here who think that this country, because of its small size, should not get involved in foreign policy issues are “narrow minded” in their thinking, Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves said this week.

He further said that thinking that monetary and financial policy is the only instruments at the state’s disposal is flawed.

“I just want to make a broad point. There are some narrow minded people in our country who hold a view that St. Vincent and the Grenadines is a very small place and what you should do is keep your small self to yourself, know your place, fix the little road here if you can fix it but don’t get involved in any foreign policy set of issues and the prime minister who takes an activist part in foreign policy, [they say] ‘Ah, [he’s] travelling!’” Gonsalves said at a press briefing this week.

He was speaking on his return to the country after a 15-day trip over the Christmas and New Year period to Bethlehem, Georgia, and Azerbaijan.

Gonsalves told reporters that travelling “is a tiring business” and every time he leaves this country “it is for the people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines”.

He said that he would address the issue of narrow-mindedness in his budget speech on Monday.

He, however, said, that because of the nation’s small size, it means that “we must use all the instruments at our disposal to enlarge our economic and political space in our own interest”.

The nation’s foreign policy, Gonsalves said, “must be predicated on the requirement to enhance our capacity to deal more efficaciously with our external environment — challenging as it is — and the condition within that external environment in our own interest.

“There are some people who think that the instruments which governments have are the instruments of monetary policy and fiscal policy,” he further stated.

“But that’s an extremely narrow reading of the instruments available to states like St. Vincent and the Grenadines. There are several other assets to be used and … a bundle of them are the assets of sovereignty and independence to be utilised in our people’s own interest.

“Without the utilization of those instruments, we couldn’t dream of starting the international airport,” Gonsalves said.

He further stated that there are several development projects here, which are “connected to the way we utilised in a principled manner and in a practical way our instruments of sovereignty and independence.

“So, those who just want to confine St. Vincent and the Grenadines to the 150 square miles and the 100,000 here and maybe then the diaspora — because they are now forced to consider the diaspora — those narrow-minded persons, they are making a profound error.

“And you have to go; and you have to go and look for resources for your country and the instruments to be utilised are the instruments of sovereignty and independence along with other instruments, of course, but these are critical in the process.”

Gonsalves said that islanders tend to look inwards because they are surrounded by water.

‘But our history has taught us that while we must have an inward look, there must always be an outward gaze. And that outward gaze takes different forms. At an individual level, it takes the form of migration.”

He noted that from 1991 to 2001 net migration from this country exceeded the natural increase in population — the difference between births and death — and this was the reason for decrease in population.

“So people themselves go for all sorts of reasons,” he said, mentioning family reunions, education, and “a small group seek refugee status”.

Gonsalves said that the government, too, must also look outwardly while it is linking it outward gaze with and inward look to develop country.

“That is the concept and that is the basis. It is so self evident …”

He said that it does not make sense to tell people they must not migration, especially in a democratic country like this one, there is “a pull” from Canada, the United States, United Kingdom and other Caribbean countries.

Gonsalves said that that the migration pull, hitherto, came from South and Central American and the Caribbean.

“This is the history of our people over the last 100-120 years.”

He, however, said that the country must train its people at a higher level so that on migration they enter the international division of labour at a higher level.

This country, the prime minister further stated, must balance brain drain so that person that the state trains fulfil their obligations to the nation.

“These are large concepts which take you away from the narrow views which you will hear parroted from time to time,” Gonsalves said.

Follow our FeedFollow on FacebookFollow on Twitter



3 thoughts on “PM knocks ‘narrow-minded’ perception of SVG

  1. Well this man can talk all the crap he want, he is after all prime minister. So let him ramble on, and babble on, and talk foolishness, and have all the people worship him, because that is what we do, worship these people who are mere humans, and look to them to run a country, which we could do ourselves through private enterprise and much more. Futhermore, is like the people them blind or have no shame. Look wey we come too, we are beggars. When hurricane use to pass we, hurricane nah miss. Everybody ah leave, only a few stay, in-addition to the rich and famous at buccament bay, and mustique.

    On the other note, the reality is I have saltfish to sell?TAKE YOUR MINDS OUT THE GUTTER. 20$ a pound please!!! meet me at tokyo.

    Posted by Ellis Balls | January 7, 2012, 10:40
  2. Way to go Gonsalves, them who think they can do better should give a go see how far they will take the country. A lot Vincentians are small minded and shallow.

    Posted by GODWIN | January 7, 2012, 21:28
  3. Well here I am with my narrow mind. The country is small with a tiny revenue and a Prime Minister who wants to live like the grandeur of the Amercan President or a Saudi King, Gonsalves spends our money like its his own and is totally out of control.

    We know the reason to travel to all those crap countries is to scrounge and ponce off them. What we have to say to them could be spoken to their UN ambassador’s, or by video conferance calls.

    What do we want from them and what do they want from us.

    Well we want money from them, not a little loose change but multi millions, and they are not interested unless we have something to offer them in return.

    The only thing that we have and that they want, is our vote in the UN. Most of these countries have human rights problems, killing and torturing their own people. Murdering, torturing, executing, imprisoning and generaly harrassing and victimising their Christian citizens. They are treated in such a way because they embrace Christianity and refuse to give up their beliefs.

    Iran have hundreds of Christians in prison, some on death row, they also have hundreds of prisoners who have done little more than spoken out against the state. They execute women if they are raped, by stoneing them to death, the rapist goes free. They are locked in battle with the rest of the World over their nuclear ambitions to get themselves an atomic bomb. They are threatening the whole Worlds peace and security. Gonsalves has aligned SVG with this absolutly rubbish regime. Why are they our friends, because we vote with them or abstain in their favour at the United Nations, in return the Iranians give us financial aid, grants and probably loans.
    This money is blood money, because to get it we have to sacrifice Iranian Christians, The airport at Argyle is now named the Christian Blood Airport [CBA]. Let ther be no mistaking what I am saying, our scrounge policy is directly causing the death of Christians in Iran and elsewhere.

    The Japanese have a huge whaling fleet, they are known to kill whales illegally. They also take thousands of whales and claim that they do so for the sake of scientific research. Whales are becoming extinct in some waters and the whole species is at risk. The UN try and curtail the whaling actions of the Japanese, but Saint Vincent votes at the UN to support them, at other time abstain from voting to help them. In return for our UN vote the Japanese build fish markets for us. They have already admitted buying UN votes from Caribbean countries, and that includes us. We are willing to sacrifice the whale population for Japanese assistance with fishing and a few

    Georgia has a dreadful human rights record and need our UN vote.

    Azerbiajan has a dreadful human rights and Christian persecution record and needs our UN vote.

    Venezuela is run by a Marxist lunatic, grabbing private land and companies, failing to pay proper compensation. Imprisoning people, even Judiciary who do not support him. There are hundreds of students imprisoned for protesting against him. He makes lunatic statements about America, saying they have got machines that cause earthquakes, hurricanes, cancer and other stupid declarations. He has wrecked the Venezuelan economy. Second llargest inflation rate in the World, second only to Ethiopia. People are poorer than ever before in Venezuela. Wages half the pay of SVG., yet the country has vast oil wealth. Recently purchased submarines and all sorts of war machines from Russia at the cost of multi billions of dollars. Chavez frequently appears on TV where he talks crap and rants and raves for hours. He recently made an exercise video in which he stars and is for sale in Venezuela, looks like a buffoon. Yet we vote at the UN with everthing that Venezuela demands, right or wrong.

    Cuba is another crap country with hundreds of political prisoners still in prison. Hundreds of Christians locked up. Recently releasing 2000 because the Pope is comeing to Cuba.
    They interfere in most of the South American countries and encourage left wing gourillor warfare to try and destabalise or overthrow countries. Doing somthing similar in a number of Caribbean countries. They need and they get our UN vote.

    North Korea, you all know about them already, but they need our UN vote also.

    Many of our citizens have been forced to emigrate because of the policies and persecutions by the Gonsalves government. Some have left because they are subjected to crime and abuse at the hands of the police. Of course some have left to find employment, there is none in SVG, and if you work for the government you are lucky to get paid.

    Crime is out of control and everyone wants to leave but can’t

    Posted by Peter | January 9, 2012, 11:10

I-Witness News’ tweets


%d bloggers like this: