Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace fires his secretary

Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace. (File photo)

Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace. (File photo)

KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent, March 31, IWN – Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace on Thursday fired his secretary, Rishatha Nicolls, who would have marked 12 years in the post on Aug. 1.

Nicolls told I-Witness News on Sunday that she was not shocked that she was fired but is “dissatisfied” with the reasons given.

She was informed by letter on Thursday that her employment was being terminated with immediate effect.

“It did give three reasons, which I really do not want to disclose because I am not sure of like legal anything…” Nicholls told I-Witness News of the letter.

She, however, said she would seek “clarity”.

“I will, in fact, try to have as much clarity being given to the reason in an orderly way, without any damage, any bias; without any bitterness or anything, because I am still grateful for the opportunity to have served the New Democratic Party through the Office of the Leader of the Opposition.

“So, I do not wish to be ungrateful or to create the impression that it was never an enjoyable experience. I will not create that kind of thing. It is just an unfortunate stuff and I will in fact try to have as much clarification done to that situation,” she said.

Nicholls, an East Kingstown constituent, said she initially had a good relationship with Eustace, who is also her parliamentary representative and president of the New Democratic Party (NDP).

“Initially, it was very good. Along the way, we had problems, which I believe were unresolved,” she said of the relationship.

Asked about the nature of the problems, Nicholls said:

“I think job security. I think too many influences.”

She explained that her job was “three-fold” by virtue of Eustace’s status in Parliament and the NDP.

“I am an NDP supporter and I am also a constituent of East Kingstown so I also would make sure that whatever I need to do in the constituency that I live, I do –make sure that I honour my commitments as a supporter of the party, in that kind of sense.”

Nicholls said she had a water outage at home and was preparing her daughter for a Girl Guides camp and was therefore not at her office when the dismissal letter was delivered.

Addison “Bash” Thomas, Eustace’s research officer, informed Nicholls by phone of a letter having been left at the office for her and she asked him to open it and read the contents to her.

“And that’s how I found out,” said.

“It is not that I was shocked. But I was disappointed with the reasons,” she said in response to a question about how she felt on hearing the news.

Nicholls further told I-Witness News that her support for the NDP still stands.

“My support for the NDP will not change. NDP didn’t do me anything,” she said.

The ruling Unity Labour Party has already signalled its intention to try to gain political mileage out of the development.

ULP assistant general-secretary, Elson Crick, who is also communications director in the Office of the Prime Minister, has mentioned the dismissal on Facebook and added that the party’s radio programmes will be especially interesting this week.

Nicholls told I-Witness News that the ULP’s response is expected.

“The ULP is a political organisation that has its own work to do and I cannot dictate for them how they will do their work.

“I just have to observe the whole situation and be wise as to, more or less, what will affect or benefit me. I do not want to be caught up in any complication. I do not want to have to be in any situation of bitterness and anger.

“In all fairness, I know, from the spiritual perspective, sometimes everything works for good. So, it is not that I am going to be angry. I know it is hard, because you have to, more or less, adjust to a change is something that I hadn’t anticipated at this time.

“So, it is, more or less, preparing for the adjustment rather than being bitter or wanting to revenge,” she said.

Nicholls studied office procedures at school and, during her employment as Eustace’s secretary, completed a certificate in computing and a diploma in administration and management.

Calls to Eustace’s home Sunday evening went unanswered.

Nicholls is the second person fired by Eustace in the past year.

Last April, he fired then senator, Anesia Baptiste, over a party policy about religion.



12 thoughts on “Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace fires his secretary

  1. Why I Fired My Secretary

    Two weeks ago, was my forty-fifth birthday, and I wasn’t feeling too hot that morning anyway.
    I went into breakfast, knowing my wife would be pleasant and say Happy Birthday and probably have a present for me.

    She didn’t even say Good Morning, let alone any Happy Birthday. I said, well, that’s wives for you. The children will remember. The children came into breakfast and didn’t say a word.

    When I started to the office I was feeling pretty low and despondent. As I walked into my office, my secretary Janet said, “Good Morning, Boss, Happy Birthday.” And I felt a little better; someone had remembered.

    I worked until noon. About noon Janet knocked on my door and said, “You know it’s such a beautiful day outside and it’s your birthday, let’s go to lunch, just you and me.”

    I said, “By George, that’s the greatest thing I’ve heard all day. Let’s go.”

    We went to lunch. We didn’t go where we normally go; we went out into the country to a little private place. We had two martinis and enjoyed lunch tremendously.

    On the way back to the office, she said, “You know, it’s such a beautiful day. We don’t need to go back to the office. Do we?”

    I said, “No, I guess not.”

    She said, “Let’s go to my apartment.”

    After arriving at her apartment, we had another martini and smoked a cigarette and she said, “Boss, if you don’t mind, I think I’ll go into the bedroom and slip into something more comfortable.”

    “Sure,” I excitedly replied. She went into the bedroom and in about six minutes, she came out… … carrying a big birthday cake, followed by my wife and children. All were singing Happy Birthday.

    … and there on the couch I sat… … with nothing on but my socks…

    … and *that’s* why I fired my secretary

    Posted by Teacherfang (@Llijame) | March 31, 2013, 22:50
  2. I am not sure how to take your story. This is a serious issue for both the young lady and the NDP. She’s out of a job and has a child to support. Why not wait for more information before trying to make a joke out of this incident.
    Keep this up and folks may see you and your responses to serious articles as a joke.
    You are a talented writer don’t spoilt it now.

    Posted by pvpalmer | April 1, 2013, 13:20
  3. @PVPALMER the path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the iniquities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of the darkness. For he is truly his brother’s keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know I am the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon you.

    Now you may wondering WTF, well, I had a similar thought when I read your post.

    PS: Just in case you are basing your praise of me as a “talented writer” on the assumption that I wrote that “story”…sorry to spoil it for you, I am not the author; it’s a joke taken from some site, author unknown. And yes the above passage is my favorite quote of all time from the movie pulp fiction, if you didn’t already know. Just wanted to clear that up. Hate to be trying to live up to a standard that I couldn’t possibly attained.


    Posted by Teacherfang (@Llijame) | April 1, 2013, 21:42
    • The DICTATOR of St. Vincent the Grenadines is Arnhim Eustace.

      This is the same LEADER and POLITICAL PARTY that PROPAGATE on a daily how things HARD in SVG, but they took food out of a poor woman’ mouth by FIRING her.

      By the way, it seems like the NDP has a PROBLEM with women.

      First it was the DISMISSAL of Anesia Baptiste without due process. Then Senator Vynnette Frederick was SOUNDLY DEFEATED by Ernesto Crooke for the position of PUBLIC RELATION OFFICER of the NDP. And now they have FIRED the SECRETARY of the OPPOSITION LEADER, Mrs. Nichols.

      By the way, what became of EG LYNCH?

      Imagine supposedly educated Vincentians want Eustace to be the LEADER of this blessed nation. These Vincentians are either EDUCATED FOOLS, JEALOUS or HATE Dr. Gonsalves or know their PERSONAL AGENDA cannot be fulfilled if the ULP continues to be the governing party. So they not about country but more about themselves.

      Again, I would not hire Mr. Eustace and the NDP to manage a mauby shop much less governing a country.

      Posted by VINCYPOWA | April 3, 2013, 18:04
      • The Eustace and Gonsalves attacking is getting pretty old now. Neither gentleman alone is the saving grace of our country.
        We had enough of hearing who is a liar and how can’t manage. It’s like we can’t look pass either for who next to take the country forward, I for one am looking to see how Sabato is being developed for possible leadership and not looking to entertain any mauby shop talk.

        Problem with women? This is almost nearing desperation especailly after it was announced a few children ages 11-14 give birth last year but it yet to be announce who all was arrested and charged for these crimes. By your logic the ULP has a problem with young girls. Can’t suport you on that one Mr Powa.

        Posted by stainlessesq | April 3, 2013, 23:00
      • STAINLESSESQ, last first.

        I am PUZZLED as to what children giving birth last year has to do with the ULP or that the NDP having a woman problem, so help me out.

        That said; we have looked passed Eustace for THREE CONSECUTIVE GENERAL ELECTIONS. The WISE PEOPLE of this BLESSED NATION has stated, by the outcome of the elections, that they do not want Eustace to be the LEADER of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Yet, he holds onto power.

        Eustace is probably the only politician of a DEMOCRATIC PARTY that has LOST 3 CONSECUTIVE GENERAL ELECTIONS as LEADER and has not RESIGNED.

        Dr. Gonsalves on the other hand has shown GREAT LEADERSHIP not only in SVG but in the REGION as well.

        I do not have to list the COUNTLESS ACCOMPLISHMENTS of his GOVERNMENT under his LEADERSHIP, even during the worst global economic times since the GREAT DEPRESSION, because you should KNOW them. If you do not KNOW them then you do not BELONG in this CONVERSATION.

        As for SABOTO CAESAR, he is one of several “YOUNG PERSONS” in the ULP that one could LOOK TO for LEADERSHIP. We cannot say the same about any YOUNG PERSONS in the NDP, because they have none.

        This FACT is just one of MANY REASONS why I said that I would not HIRE Eustace and the NDP to MANAGE a MAUBY SHOP much less GOVERN a COUNTRY.

        Posted by VINCYPOWA | April 7, 2013, 09:54
      • Mr VincyPowa,

        This will be the last post I will address to you directly as I am not out to get into any personal attacks or back and forth with anyone on this site, defend a political party or individual. My goal is to comment on issues that arise in the country based on the fact made available, independent of affiliation.

        I was trying to highlight the underlying False Equivalence the WE (as a people, not you personally or your party) often apply when not even applicable by putting an individual ahead of the actual issue.

        Employment is voluntary, and if someone chooses to terminate this agreement it becomes a matter of preference and in most cases a reason is not even required. Bickles is closing one if its locations, if more females are terminated than males, does it therefore mean Bickles has a problem with women? Of Course Not, I let go a female employee less than a month ago, I don’t have a problem with women, I just simply made a business decision. If Mr. Eustace unfairly used employment for political advantage and victimization that by all means he should be made accountable to the facts presented to us the Vincentian people. Right is right.

        Statutory Rape on the other hand is an established criminal offense with severely associated punishments clearly outlined in the Nation’s Laws. If we can get so angry for a single female employment being taken then words should not be able to full describe the nation’s anger on these female children’s innocence and future having been taken from them and the ongoing injustice from the police department and legal system.

        The False Equivalence goes even further as stating failure of a government employee, group or department is automatically taken as an attack on Mr. Gonsalves so the response is to show how much worse Mr Eustace is / maybe and who can or can’t win elections. While we skip the fundamental issue of the documented mistreatment of women in our blessed land by a failing system (be it under ULP or NDP).

        As I’ve stated before keep up the good work of promoting SVG music and culture on Island Mix.

        Posted by stainlessesq | April 8, 2013, 21:29

    “I sometimes tell lies”

    “show me a liar and I will show you a thief”

    “I only work Obeah for the Lord”

    “we will hunt them down until they exist no more”

    “I am here to complete the work of Maurice Bishop”

    I just read an article that said that at the height of power in Nazi Germany there were no fewer than 8000 propagandists employed by the German State. I am not sure if this figure is correct, but it is not hard to ascertain that thousands certainly were employed knowingly and unknowingly for the sole purpose of disseminating political propaganda. How many are employed directly or indirectly by the ULP or its supreme leader?

    While we are here, just a reminder, where did the US$1 million in cash come from? When are the people to be paid for their state stolen land at Argyle?

    Posted by peterbinose | April 4, 2013, 14:18
  5. TEACHERFANG, be carefull MARXISTS have no sense of humor. The only fun they know is locking people up in Gulags in Siberia, and destroying people who talk against them.

    Posted by peterbinose | April 4, 2013, 14:27
  6. The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever

    Posted by peterbinose | April 4, 2013, 14:41
  7. The Eustace and Gonsalves attacking is getting pretty old now. Neither gentleman alone is the saving grace of our country.
    We had enough of hearing who is a liar and how can’t manage. It’s like we can’t look pass either for who next to take the country forward, I for one am looking to see how Sabato is being developed for possible leadership and not looking to entertain any mauby shop talk.

    Problem with women? This is almost nearing desperation especailly after it was announced a few children ages 11-14 give birth last year but it yet to be announce who all was arrested and charged for these crimes. By your logic the ULP has a problem with young girls. Can’t suport you on that one Mr Powa.

    Posted by stainlessesq | April 6, 2013, 12:06
  8. VINCYPOWA, I nearly wept when I realised how puzzling everything is for you. Let me unravel part of the puzzle.

    In a survey it was found that all the underage girls came from ULP supporter families, every single one of them. More than half were impregnated by their fathers, or their mothers boy friend.

    Its what’s called statutory rape, now perhaps you can organise a rape rally, they need some fun again.

    Posted by peterbinose | April 9, 2013, 19:52

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