Gaston Wins You Win: The People’s Rescue Plan

To what arguably has to be accurately described as the most visionary and “comprehensive” presentation of a political manifesto in independent Antigua and Barbuda, the leader of the Antigua and Barbuda Labour Party (ABLP) gripped the attention of the audience with a stellar exposition of a “people’s” project for transforming the country into an “economic powerhouse” in the Caribbean. So assured and confident was Browne’s delivery, that the audience – inclusive of many significant stakeholders and members of civil society – paid rapt attention to the social and economic framework being incisively laid out by Browne.

Browne’s impressive performance was followed by other ABLP candidates as collectively they ushered in the dawning of a policy blueprint that would enable the people to envisage better tomorrows for the citizens and residents of the twin-island state under an ABLP government. Very far-reaching, there was a richness of diverse policy frameworks that touched on almost every endeavour of people’s lives coupled with details on the rescue plan that would benefit Antigua and also see fit that “Barbuda must be treated” as Antigua’s equals.

Step by step, sector by sector, the launch through wide open a very pragmatic but panoramic view regarding the pillars upon which the rebuilding of state and economy would commence once the ABLP attains the helm of Government come the day of June 13th, 2014. There were no unattainable goals being revealed; rather, there was a novel, well thought out, coherent set of objectives which were specifically designed “to lift all of the people” as Gaston Browne asserted.

Driving home the point on taking self-responsibility for being able to create more, produce more, and in conjunction with the plan of 500 homes in 500 days, Gaston Browne said to huge affirmative responses that under his leadership and the policies which would be implemented by the ABLP, the intent was to use “our money, our labour, our expertise, for the empowerment of our people” rather than following the UPP’s regressive policies which allow for expatriates to exploit the system and, unfavourably to helping Antigua and Barbuda, were able to repatriate their profits to the developed world.

Perhaps a statement which carried more potency than its simplicity suggest was that “there is absolutely no future in looking back.” Acknowledging the imperfections in previous ALP administrations, and the fact that shortcomings exist in each and every government in each and every country across the international system, Browne did not shy away from speaking on the tough issues. In fact, the undisputed ABLP leader said that” we would take steps to strengthen the governance framework in Antigua and Barbuda.” Browne went on to identify his and the ABLP’s commitments to “strengthen the integrity in public life act … the anti-corruption act, and the freedom of information act” to inspiring applause.

In the final analysis, it was clear that Gaston Browne and the ABLP spokespersons were perceived as being genuine, ready, and committed in their pursuit of bring prosperity through investments and job creation together with real empowerment for the nation’s people. Similar messages will no doubt be publicised on the political platforms and the multiple media outlets inclusive of social media.

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