Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Victoria Charles-Clarke is appalled at statements made by a government minister at a politically rally on Tuesday evening.
Minister for Physical Development, Housing and Urban Renewal Stanley Felix, while addressing a Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP) rally at the Castries Market, called on the DPP to resign or retire if she is unable to do what’s “just and right” in the interest of Saint Lucia.
Felix was responding to criticisms that the SLP Administration has failed to bring to the courts all of the major allegations of corruption against members of the previous United Workers Party (UWP) government.
The minister said the reports were submitted to the DPP for action.
“We looked into the allegations and that is why we have the report indicating all of the funds that were misappropriated during the reign of the last government. It is now for the DPP to act,” Felix stated.
He added: I will say it again tonight. I would issue a cry on behalf of the people of Saint Lucia. I Stanley Felix, minister in the SLP government, resident of Castries Central, citizen of this country, I ask you Madame DPP to issue a statement on the report that is before you. We want it, the people want it. It is only fair that you do what is just and right in the interest of this country. If you can’t do that, I suggest you resign, retire or just quit.”
In response, Charles-Clarke said Felix’s behaviour was disrespectful and appalling.
“I find it very disturbing, and in fact appalling, that a minister of government would use a political platform to call upon the DPP to retire or resign. You know I think that this indicates a lack of respect and courtesy for the Office of the DPP. Mr. Felix is a lawyer, he knows the constitution establishes that office which has tenure and the process for removal of the DPP.
She added: Everything takes time, ok? And after I have indicated on numerous occasions that there is a shortage of lawyers, of resources in my department, and sometimes I find myself engaged in court trials that take up most of my time. I have been operating without a deputy since 2010. The structure, the staff structure of my office, has not been fully provided for. And so my time has been spent primarily in the court and dealing with the hundreds of cases that I have to review on a daily basis.”