The opposition United Workers Party (UWP) has raised several concerns as it relates to the early election date set by Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony.
UWP executive, Nancy Charles, told a media conference on Friday that she anticipates that a lot of chaos could take place on and before election day.
She said while she was not clear whether it was deliberate attempt by the current government, it will affect many people, especially students.
Charles said on June 6, 2016 students preparing to write the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CXC) examination will be sitting Food and Nutrition in the morning, and additional Mathematics in the afternoon .
“In Saint Lucia, we do have a few of those secondary schools where those exams will be written, that are used as polling stations. The question that is being asked by some of parents and students, is what happens to this exam?”
The UWP executive said she has personally received calls from principals and parents, who are concerned and want to to find out what will be done to fix this issue.
“It shows the insensitivity of the Prime Minister.He doesn’t care. He speaks about the youths, but the concern that should be put in today is not there. This is not about Saint Lucia, but about what Dr. Anthony wants,” she said.
The Electoral Department is reportedly scrambling to make arrangements for alternative venues.
“We are not too sure about what is going to happen to the voters who have traditionally voted at a particular polling station. And we are not too sure by what date the new polling stations will be given,” she said.
Another issue, the UWP raised has to do with the Voters List which by law has to be made available by March 31 every year.
“And as a result of there being an unverified list of some 30,000 voters, the traditional list that was expected to be published by March 31, 2016 was not and we anticipated a new verified list later this year.”
Charles said in discussions with the Electoral Department, she was told that the Department wrote to the Prime Minister to have the final list validated by May 31, 2016. The Prime Minister agreed and it was gazetted. So it was anticipated that the final voters list would be made available by that date.
However, Charles said it is mindbogglingly to her that knowing that the final list will be verified by May 31, 2016 government has decided to call an election on June 6, 2016, which gives parties five to six days to peruse the list.
“And we believe as a party and as Saint Lucians in general that this is unfair,” she remarked.
The party plans to write the Electoral Department to register it’s concern.