“Caribbean leaders must know when to pack up”- Former SVG Prime Minister

“Caribbean leaders must know when to pack up”- Former SVG Prime Minister
Sir James Mitchell
Sir James Mitchell

Former Prime Minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Sir James Mitchell said that the Caribbean has a problem with succession, emphasizing that leaders must know when to “pack up.”

Mitchell made this statement during his address at the UWP National Convention held on Sunday.

Mitchell made reference to the United National Congress (UNC) of Trinidad and Tobago where members of that party are split between having Kamla Persad-Bissessar returned as leader or not.

Persad-Bissessar lost the September 2015 election in the twin-island republic to People’s National Movement’s fourth leader, Dr Keith Rowley.

The long-standing SVG prime minister also pointed to the recent situation in Canada, where Stephen Harper resigned as party leader following a decisive defeat by Justin Trudeau’s Liberal party.

He also pointed to the last election in England, where the conservative party led by David Cameron won and the same night the Labour Party Leader Ed Miliband tendered his resignation.

“We have a problem with succession in the Caribbean. What is wrong with us? We don’t know when to pack up?” he questioned.

Mitchell said that he outlived almost 40 leaders of the Caribbean and he has even witnessed some of them, whom he described as dragon flies, “who dip their tails in the water and then they are gone.”

He said “life changes,” but when a party loses an election, they must do a proper post-mortem and find out why they lost. “If the people say they ain’t want you, go home,” he asserted.

“I want to say to you Mr. Chastanet and I want you to promise me UWP members that if you lead the party at the next election to defeat you retire the same night.”

However, he also admitged that a lot of leaders or successors make mistakes, but should not take away from the fact that these leaders gave their service to the party and the country.

“I believe the people of our Caribbean are at fault. We do not know how to look at people service for the party…honour their service in the new dispensation,” he advised.


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  1. Most of the commentators cannot read between the lines. Not enough understanding of English to recognise the Sonny Mitchel is really talking about Kenny, whose spent formative years shaped as a resident of SVG. Yes. SVG. That one needs to be put to the political pasture. He has overstayed his usefulness and welcome.


  2. Hello is this one of those Do as I say but not as my party does. ? Do we really need political lessons from our Vince friends. Come on. The man was paid to travel and deliver a blow below the belt. And that is exactly what he did. No surprises there.


  3. Now I understand why Kind dragged up. It must have been a very embarrassing situation for him. The man was under attack by Isaac and this guy. I would probably have done the same thing.


  4. I just can not believed he Mr.James made that statement. The reason I am saying that is his NDP leader Mr.Eustace of his party has lost 3 elections to the ULP and have not ask Mr. Eustace to depart...

    I think he Mr.James was attacking the Hon. Stephen King in a diplomatic way.

    My thinking was he Mr.James came to SLU to help work the problems of the infighting but he cause more pain.


    • oh shut up. james amd eustuse do not even see eye to eye. and for the record if he had his way eustuse would have been a gonnna a long time ago. I support him on what he said. The same goes to King and people like Kenny who thinks that they should be leader for life. Go figure why we have so much trouble in the UWP and other parties in the caribbean.


  5. is it me or isnt that the same thing mary issac said when Stevenson king left the convention about knowng when to leave and pack up


  6. This last set of political theatre was all about in-fighting for the title -- and not by any account --- the substance of leadership. Who has the best set of skills to take us out of the same poverty trap that such as circus as this last one, keeps on growing bigger ad bigger NEVER EVER GOT MENTIONED! Nothing really meaningful changes with this. The constants are the recycling of outdated, stale and worn-out ideas and morons for politicians, with no blasted vision.


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