Grenada’s defeated Prime Minister Dr. Keith C. Mitchell has been in the politics of this country for almost 50 years and the Prime Minister for over 25 years.
As a newcomer unto the political landscape, he was considered a breath of fresh air. Over the years, he was idolised as a ground god. In fact, it was often touted by his supporters that he is the only man who can run Grenada and that no one could do it better than him. Utter rubbish if you ask me.
Since winning the SGNW seat in 1984, he has won on every consecutive occasion with 80%-90% of the votes. In the last two elections, his party, the NNP, won all of the 15 seats on offer.
In this this year’s general elections, he vied for another 5 year term under the slogan, “one for the road” and “safer hands, tried, tested, and delivering.” Clearly misguided, it was time to leave the political stage while still on top. In all his wisdom and understanding, he had missed the mark on when to leave by miles.
A revived opposition party under the leadership of newcomer Dickon Mitchell challenged the incumbent under the slogan, “Moving Grenada Forward” with a bold and transformative agenda.
The old Mitchell, clearly ill-advised, called a snap election. For one, I believe he would have lost his political acumen. For those with eyes to see, it was clear that KCM was a shadow of his former self and clearly a liability to the NNP.
In fact, many believed he was “CHIEF IN NAME ONLY” as it was rumoured that the country was run by his girlfriend. Poor judgement and a comedy of errors were the order of the day.
It was clear that as the campaign dragged on the old Mitchell was losing ground. He made blunders and missteps like a neophyte lacking political experience and wisdom. He seemed to have had no political strategy and if he had one, it was a case of implementation too little too late.
His campaign seemed to be miles behind the opposition and playing catch up.
A clear lack of focus on issues; only jump and whine. The campaign was clearly tone deaf to the issues that were important to the electorate.
He changed his tune on the payment of pensions when the opposition promised to pay it. He called paying salaries forthrightly “pie in the sky” when he had earlier made that promise and failed to deliver.
He committed to making IMANIs and contract workers permanent when the opposition promised to do so. He tried to down play the popularity of the opposition when it was clear for all to see that they were gaining ground.
His party used scare tactics to get votes, including claims that the IMANIs would be sent home and the SEED payments stopped if the opposition won.
None of that worked. All people saw was a leader and a regime trying to cling on to power at all cost. What a shame! An opportunity to leave a positive legacy was lost on the altar of political expediency and thirst for power. He should have left the politics during the 2013-2018 period.
After all his atrocities over the years, he seemed to have realised the errors of his ways and had garnered tremendous goodwill during that period. Many were willing to forgive and forget his past.
After the 2018 general elections, his tone changed almost overnight. He had fallen in love with a woman twice his junior and everything started going downhill. When people warned him about the dangers he was courting; he dropped them like a hot potato.
This isolated him as many of his friends and sympathisers were ostracised.
His political career started on a downward slippery slide. He was clearly losing touch with the vast majority of Grenadian people, especially the youth.
That he could not see.
On June 23rd 2022, the young Mitchell delivered an unprecedented ass whopping to the old Mitchell.
When the people learned of the NDC’s victory and that Grenada’s longest serving Prime Minister would no longer lead this nation, they celebrated in the streets.
In fact no one had ever seen such celebrations, not even after the victory of Kirani James at the 2012 Olympics.
It is as if a dark cloud has been lifted from over this nation and a bright future awaits. Congratulations to the new government and best wishes.
KCM should be clearly blamed for the defeat of the NNP and should step aside and let new blood lead the opposition and the party into the next elections. Leave while you still have some dignity.
Love of Country