Our economy and people cannot benefit from the experience of Covid-19 if a genuine effort is not made to increase domestic production by putting our people to work and producing to feed ourselves.
This has to be a national conscious effort in which we put our people to work in the areas considered necessary for food domestic security initially, and then for export. If at any time in our economic history a total nationalistic view is to be taken on development, it is now. The international events justify such an approach and behavior is in line with what many other countries are doing, as a direct response to the pandemic.
To increase productivity, our government needs to make an about turn from its focus on divesting our national assets to unknown “investors” for quick money, into investing in our people and making maximum use of our natural resources. We need to focus more on looking inwards to our people and their respective talents, than outside.
We must also examine our financial institutions and identify and mobilize resources for development. We need to study the structure of our economy and do an analysis of each sector, identifying the constraints to their development and assessing their contribution to the country’s GDP. It is precisely in this sector analysis we will determine the sectors that must play a leading role in the economic recovery. We must set targets for each sector, identify projects to be implemented in phases in these sectors, and then mobilize the resources (financial and human) and put the nation to work. This is what the NDC would do, in a post-Covid-19 Grenada.
With such an approach, national unemployment will decline. This national development drive will necessitate a united effort from a united people working to one united goal. But the country requires quality leadership from a true leader, not just a tired, visionless Prime Minister; but an admired and respected leader who has the trust and confidence of the people. Franka Bernardine offers what we need now.
Keith Mitchell has been in government for almost 30 years and Prime Minister for 21. He has clearly shown that he is unable to awaken such consciousness in our people. Instead, his idea of prosperity for the Grenadian people is based on a cycle of dependency, considering himself as Santa Claus or in his own words, ‘Papa’. With Mitchell’s way, the creative energies of the people and their desire to aspire to higher heights are stifled. Consequently, the majority of our people become poorer, barely surviving rather than thriving.
It is this heavy spirit of dependency that is negatively affecting our people, particularly our young ones. Our young people are frustrated because avenues for expansion of their creative energies and opportunities for personal and professional development are virtually non-existent. Many spend several years in the IMANI program which was meant to train them for two years. Sadly, Mitchell is proud of this legacy.
The NDC invites the young people on board to chart a new, bright and prosperous path for all of you. It is time to repair the damage done by those intent on keeping you in perpetual poverty, just to stay in power.
Undoubtedly, it would take some time to break from this unpleasant past and to create a new society with new positive values and attitudes towards work, study and development.
The NDC is the only organization that offers such hope for our country. The NDC is the only organized force in Grenada that can lead the avalanche needed to sweep Grenada from the clutches of the well thought out policy of Keith Mitchell, to keep our people in a state of dependency while a few live well.
In a Grenada that is not ruled by a cabal, where the creative energies of the people are allowed to flourish and thrive rather than barely survive, the whole society will benefit. The harsh reality is that, we have a cabal imbued with chronic nepotism managing our affairs for their benefit. Our country simply cannot grow under this construct. And in the post Covid-19 world, to survive and thrive, we need a brand new dispensation.
(The above was submitted by the main opposition National Democratic Congress headed by former Education Minister Franka Alexis-Bernardine)