The word ‘sin’ here is taken from ancient Greek, meaning to miss the mark, as in archery.
On Wednesday 17 May, after the aging leadership of the St. Lucia Labour Party (SLP) had exercised their rusty limbs, they turned to the Castries market steps to vent anger at the Pearl of the Caribbean project, its promoters and supporters. Curiously, the MP for Vieux Fort South, a prime minister for 15 years, and 20 representing that constituency, seemed adamantly opposed to the proposals. Yet he was familiar with the project design and intent, and for 15 months or more never disclosed it. He chose the market steps that day to mercilessly tear into Teo Ah Khing, CEO of Desert Star Holdings, the man responsible for the vision and design of the project. Clearly the aging leader had missed the mark – a sin – misdirecting his venom.
That vented anger reminded one how that same MP had verbally attacked the former Ambassador of Taiwan to Saint Lucia, His Excellency Tom Chou. And what did the ambassador do? He was merely assisting rural Saint Lucia with small drains and footpaths aimed at boosting food production, helping to alleviate poverty. Progress in the rural communities frightened the SLP leadership as it was anathema to their ancient political ideology pandering to the poor and misinformed. The Pearl of the Caribbean appears to that SLP mindset to be a threat similar to Tom Chou’s efforts.
As it now stands, people have had sufficient time to study the behaviour of that SLP in government and in opposition. And what they see convulses the innocent and those hardened from years of cynicism with politics. ‘Take up thy bed and walk’ is no longer a challenge and social construct issued by an earlier progressive agenda.
The SLP opposition to Tom Chou had no alternative plans for helping rural Saint Lucia. It failed to build larger drains and the scarce resources only allowed for small footpaths and narrow roads. These latest attacks on a new foreign investor reminded of the US President’s attacks on minorities, Mexicans and Muslims. These political attacks have resulted in more frequent assaults on Jewish property, Muslims, African Americans and other minorities. Can we expect similar reaction in Saint Lucia from rabid SLP hacks? Will persons of different political persuasions senselessly attack and hurt each other as a result of that speech? Should loud-mouthed vagabonds on political platforms go free? Such language should be cause for arrest and charges.
Interestingly, the opposition SLP has revealed an even bigger project proposal than that of DSH, intended to cover well over 1,000 acres of land from Praslin to Vieux Fort and including a factory to produce pharmaceuticals. Instead of criticizing Teo Ah Khing, why didn’t the opposition explain its alternative plans? Why not allow the people to choose between the 1,000-acre mining and pharmaceutical factory and the Pearl of the Caribbean? Why hide such a major investment proposal? Does that party still believe in transparency and accountability?
Perhaps the party is ashamed of the way it behaved, like the dog Carlo, when the huge factory was dangled before it. The dog Carlo had the DSH bone secure in its mouth but in crossing the Troumassee River to Vieux Fort, it saw its reflection in the water. The greedy dog jumped into the river after the mining and pharmaceuticals bone and lost the DSH bone. Poor greedy Carlo! I know of people like greedy Carlo. They are never satisfied. The more they have, the more they want. Unfortunately neither food nor money can fully satisfy such inner hunger.
Such greed may explain why the public meeting on the Castries market steps fell far of its mark, descending into threats of war and violence. That meeting was certainly a missed opportunity. But, given its recent history, citizens had no reason to expect better. Such failure is the mark of self-seeking imposters and free-riders. Saint Lucia can do without such persons who too often miss the mark – sin, as in archery.