United Workers Party (UWP) Chairman Ezechiel Joseph has said he welcomes Dr. Claudius Preville’s run for leadership of the party.
Joseph told St. Lucia News Online (SNO) today that Dr. Preville is no stranger to the UWP and if his intention is to become leader, then the party welcomes it.
“It’s a democratic process and everybody have a right to offer their service in whatever capacity they feel they can serve the party. I don’t see any problems with that,” he told SNO. However, Joseph said his only concern is whatever decision is made, the results must be accepted.
“Persons have to deal with the results and have to move on after due process has been done,” he said.
The UWP chairman explained that Dr. Preville has not only been a long-standing member, but has in the past provided technical assistance to the party.
Joseph told SNO that Dr. Preville will have to receive a nomination before he can run for that post. The party’s conference of delegates which is scheduled to take place on Sunday, September 21, will see party members being nominated for various positions. A candidate will have to be first be nominated by a constituency bench and the elections are usually held later at the party’s convention.
Meanwhile, ousted UWP member Richard Frederick has thrown his support behind Dr. Preville.
Frederick told the media, “I will support anyone that brings a semblance of unity. The ‘U’ stands for unity in the acronym UWP and I will stand for anyone who brings unity to the UWP,” he stated.
Frederick claims there is rise of dictatorship in the UWP. Since his expulsion, the Castries Central MP has accused party leader Allan Chastanet of causing a division in the party and the support base.
On Thursday, August 19, Frederick told the media, “With Allen Chastanet there is and there can never be hope… If you do not support Allen Chastanet, you are in for it.”
Chastanet was elected political leader of the UWP in August 2013. Upon taking up that position, former Prime Minister Stephenson King was removed as opposition leader. Micoud North MP Dr. Gale Rigobert has since taken up that post.
Dr Preville recently announced plans to run for leadership of the party. Preville said he is being encouraged to do so by many party supporters. Preville is of the view that there is a void that needs to be filled and he may be the one to do that.
The economist has expressed confidence in uniting and strengthening the party. He plans to contest the Babonneau seat for the party.