On Thursday the United Workers Party released a press statement in response to allegations surrounding the credibility of UWP political leader Allen Chastanet’s academic qualifications. An email was also making the rounds on social media purporting to be from a University Chastanet had attended.
In the press release the UWP stated that it had received information on a letter circulating on social media, which at first glance would appear to be from the American University in Washington DC.“The letter dated June 17th 2015 is responding to an apparent request made by email on that same day, by UWP Chairman Senator Ezechiel Joseph to American University enquiring on the records and credentials of former student Allen Chastanet. This information has also been used on Radio St. Lucia for the express purpose of political gain by Shelton Daniel on his morning programme of July 28th 2015,” the release bearing the name of party communication manager Lionel Ellis read.
“No such request was made by the Chairman,” the statement said adding “the circulated is now under investigation by the university since the letter contains the logo and the name of one of its directors.”
According to the UWP, the organization has in hand a letter dated June 26th 2015 from the Coordinator for Degree Clearance indicating that Mr. Allen Chastanet has earned a Master of Arts degree in Development Banking at American University. His graduation date was May 13th 1990. That letter has since been forwarded to the media.
That same evening Allen Chastanet took to his Faceook page in an attempt to also clear the air. “In light of the new developments surrounding the issue of my credentials, and the fact that St. Lucia’s name is being tarnished in the process by well-known political groups in this country, I have decided to make available for online scrutiny, a copy of my certificate from Bishop’s University,” the statement on his page reads. “Yesterday, I released a letter from American University in Washington confirming that I had attended and obtained a Master of Arts Degree. I am currently off island but upon my return, I will make available both certificates to the media,” it added.
“It is heart breaking that persons would go to great lengths to commit fraud – a criminal act, just to discredit me. It shows the true character of these individuals and if they are given a second chance in office, who knows what else they will do in order to have their way. St. Lucia’s name will once again be in the international media if and when American University decides to pursue legal action. It is all because of desperate politicians and their supporters,” he went on to say.