“John Compton refused to pay civil servants too, do not attempt to rewrite history” – prime minister responds to opposition leader

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“John Compton refused to pay civil servants too, do not attempt to rewrite history” – prime minister responds to opposition leader
Sir John Compton
Sir John Compton

Below is a statement from the Office of the Prime Minister  in response to a press release by the Opposition Leader Stephenson King

Leader of the Opposition, Honourable Stephenson King, should refrain from distorting Saint Lucia’s history in an attempt to gain political mileage over the ongoing dispute between the Civil Service Union and the government of Saint Lucia.

In an interview with HTS on Thursday, March 21, 2013, Honourable Stephenson King said: “This belief or this practice of no work, no pay has never happened in the history of Saint Lucia. Even in 1979 thereabout when the public servants went on strike for 54 or 59 days, Sir John Compton never deducted any monies from the salaries of those public officers.”

The facts are clear and history cannot be altered. On December 7, 1976, civil servants took industrial action and went on strike. Then Premier John Compton refused to pay them. Not even after the report prepared by Kenneth Stoby, G. Guard. N. E. Venner and D. W. Degazon made recommendations, did Compton relent.

While the tribunal accepted that the law and customs of Saint Lucia supported Compton’s position, it nonetheless said that the government had so badly handled the events leading up to the strike that it should bear some blame. It was on that basis that the tribunal suggested a compromise of sorts and recommended payment. Compton insisted on the law and still refused to pay.

In 1979 another civil service strike took place and lasted for 59 days. Again Prime Minister Compton, as he by then had become, refused to pay. It was only upon the assumption of office later that year that a Labour government under Allan Louisy brought some comfort to the workers by awarding them the largest single increase ever given to public servants. That increase remains the largest.

The leader of the opposition must cease from this deliberate practice of misinformation and use the resources of a research officer afforded to him by the state to make more meaningful and accurate contributions to national discourse.

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17 COMMENTS

  1. Another Trip down Memory Lane. In their own words, Kenny Anthony and Musa during Public Servants Public Servants Unrest whilst the last Administration was in office. Ref. You Tube: THE WORDS OF KENNY ANTHONY AND MUSA JN BAPTISTE ARE COMING BACK TO HAUNT THEM.

    The records of history make interesting review.

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  2. Didn't the administration loose the elections because of that wage war? That is food for thought. Remember that slogan? "79 st, Lucia is mine"? Always remember the whole story people and civil servants did get a very large increase when the new govnt came in to power too. So if we are going back and will learn from history then so the maths people

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  3. STUPID politics as usual, each side trying to gain some political points. Rome is burning and the Emperors are at each others throats...then and now. Shame on King and Kenny, the K stands for forked tongues like snake tongues...we don't trust politicians, LPM too.

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  4. St lucians let get that straight. The pm simply offered the facts in that regard and also when Kenny Anthony ask the Government of the UwP to pay the civil Servants their money it was already a done deal. In any case stephenson king was out there boasting an over 5 percent economic growth in adition to him promissing the civil servants a 14. 5 percent increase and then refuse to deliver on that so let get that straight all u see no other colours than yellow

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  5. "Better days" were promised however as the heat is on...the present administration does not want to deliver! The same people who openly encouraged strike action to coerce the former administration to give a 14.5% wage increase are now singing another song, some even remaining silent. They now cannot understand why employees of our Fair Helen choose to pursue this route of action. A note to the present administration, you encouraged strike action in 2009 or thereabout, you protested with the workers for such a high augmentation in their salaries notwithstanding the grave financial implications that it would have on the nation, now you refuse to meet the needs of your people. This is definitely a poignant situation, not only for the government of the day but for those people who placed the leadership of the country in the hands of those who they thought could really bring better days. Wake up St. Lucia, open your eyes!

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  6. when the civil servants wanted the 14.5% increase when uwp was in power kenny was right there with them, called for king's head, protesting and smiling away now he's in power he won't meet the demands of the same people who he stood with just 3 years ago, and he's own people say better days was just a campaigning slogan, i guess the 100 million dollars injection into the economy he promised was just a slogan as well, when will we get a government who will tell us from the get go how bad it is and offer solutions to fix it not just lie to us to get in to power. next election i promise 200 million into our economy, a car for every household, a laptop for every child, a bottle of alcohol for every liquor cabinet. i could really use the 10g's they make every month for 5 years

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  7. i agree king must cease from this deliberate practice of misinformation and use the resources of a research officer afforded to him by the state to make more meaningful and accurate contributions to the people of st lucia

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  8. HOW DARE YOU COMPARE YOURSELF TO SIR JOHN COMPTON. This is an EMBARASSMENT!!! Mr. PM you are the BIGGEST CON ARTIST in a PRIME MINISTER that Saint Lucia has EVER had!!!!!

    Please DO NOT put yourself in the ranks of REPUTABLE LEADERS such as SIR JOHN COMPTON, DEREK WALCOTT, ARTHUR LEWIS and others....Its outrageous your MODUS OPERANDI!!!!

    BARBADOS has GRANTLY ADAMS INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT...named after it's FIRST REPUTABLE PREMIER! Your administration has FAILED to recognize reputable leaders such as John Compton by naming the Hewanorra crap name after him and also DEREK WALCOTT by naming a NATIONAL MUSEUM after his name or a Performing Arts Center....This is all BS politics Mr. PM!!!!!! Please discard your educated intellectual INDOLENCE!!!!!!

    THE NEW AMERICAN

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    • What Stephenson King should mind is the time he took so much money for he and his wife to attend the Royal Wedding in London. it was not a must for him to attend yet still he went. That money you took could have helped towards the raise those greedy lazy people are asking. Every word that comes out of this man's mouth is a total lie. CHOOPS TANS.

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      • Sa ca bwe lay chou? Was it too much for the Prime Minister and his wife to attend a Royal Wedding? Will you stop your BS, yet you calling the Civil Servants lazy and greedy? Stop embarrASSing yourself you idiot.

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  9. This statement makes no sense. As far as i remember, prime Minister kenny anthony did the same thing in 2010 when Stephenson king was prime minister. Now the shoe is on the left foot he is looking for all legal terms to threaten the leader of the opposition. This will not work.

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    • The PM is simply giving the facts, not his opinion. How can it make no sense? All some people can see is color. When will Lucians look at the facts and make informed decisions instead of making everything about color? People like you will shoot themselves in the foot just to see a party in power.

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      • As far i am concerned, i do not support any political party. I just wish that we would go down to memory lane when the PM was on the market step with CSA. Didn't he know at that time the country was going through turmoil under the UWP when he asked king to give the people their money? These are the same civil servants whom he encouraged to take protest action and now they have turned to to the same, he is crying fowl. All i say is that all politicians which ever side they are on give one story when they are in opposition but when elected they sing a different tune. So you see I am not political, i just say it as it is.

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        • Going down memory lane in the manner that you have chosen serves no purpose other than to insight the Civil Servants to believe that what they are doing is right. It should NOT be about which politician did what. It should be about our country and what is best for all St. Lucians...... It's time for educated people like yourself to raise the level of discussion in and about our country

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