As Saint Lucia draws closer to its 34th year of independence, the Lucian People’s Movement (LPM) wishes to issue a call to the nation, and in particular the island’s youth, to familiarize itself with the historic issues surrounding Saint Lucia’s decision to opt for independence in 1979.
Citizens need to familiarize themselves with the original aims for the island’s social and economic development so that they will realize the many sacrifices that they will have to make in order to secure a better future for themselves.
The performance of Saint Lucia’s past and present leaders has proven inadequate in stirring the nation towards the kind of prosperity that was envisioned on February 22, 1979, and questions should be raised concerning their failure to strengthen and diversify our local economy, particularly in the years when global technological and economic opportunities were in abundance. Nevertheless, part of the responsibility for the state of the nation today rests with its inactive citizenry.
Unless there is a greater thrust towards self-sustainability, creativity, youth empowerment, and a revival of social and political activism, rights which are protected under the constitution, young people must understand that a vote cast for an individual or political party on election day isn’t sufficient to guarantee the social and economic development of the country. Therefore, the LPM urges the youths of Saint Lucia to use this independence celebration as a starting point to reject drugs, alcohol, violence and other socially deviant behaviors and to instead embrace the social and political activism, which is the only guarantee of a better life.
Thirty-four years of waiting for economic prosperity is a very long time for an island of only 238 square miles and a population of fewer than 175,000 to deliver a better quality of life to its citizens.
Let the march towards a prosperous and equitable Saint Lucia begin!