The Nevis island legislature met for a third time since the local elections held in July, which resulted in a second-term for the Nevis Reformation Party (NRP) Administration. The NRP held on to its three seats in the legislature and strengthened its mandate by also securing the majority popular vote.
Monday’s meeting of the legislature passed three pieces of legislation: The Nevis Physical Planning and Development Control (Amendment) Ordinance, The Amenities for Tourists (Amendment) Ordinance, and Statutory Rules and Orders #7 of 2011.
The only members of the legislature to debate and make contribution to the legislation were the five legislators representing the Government: Premier and elected member for Nevis 5 (St. Thomas’), the Hon. Joseph W. Parry, Deputy Premier, Leader of Government Business and elected member for Nevis 2 (St. John’s), the Hon. Hensley Daniel, elected member for Nevis 1 (St. Paul’s), the Hon. Robelto Hector, and Junior Ministers,Hon.Carlisle Powell and Hon. Dwight Cozier.
All five members of the legislature expressed outrage at the continued absence, no-show, non-participation, and failure by the leader of the Opposing party who has refused to show up and be sworn in. Since July’s election result, not one member of the opposition has contributed to any of the legislation passed in the Assembly.
During his contribution to the debate, Junior Minister, Hon.Carlisle Powell took issue with a written apology of absence sent by the elected member who is yet to be sworn in. “I am not a lawyer by any stretch of the imagination but it is just my thinking that if you have not been sworn in, you cannot be excused from a position that you don’t have.”
It is expected that questions will surface at the next meeting of the legislature about payment of salaries to the two members of the opposition who have refused to show up to work in the Assembly since the July election. It is also expected that the President of the legislature will be asked to make a ruling on the position of the leader of the opposing party who has now missed three consecutive opportunities to be sworn in.