UWP accuses government of ‘blatant disinformation and propaganda’

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The United Workers Party categorically denounces the statements made in a press release from the
Office of the Prime Minister of Saint Lucia on March 18, 2021.

The content is replete with blatant inaccuracies, blatant misinformation and propaganda that was repeated by the Saint Lucia Labor Party during the election campaign ahead of the last general election.

It is unclear how such information can come from the Prime Minister’s Office
without having been the subject of a verification of the facts before being presented to the inhabitants of Saint
Lucy.

By accusing the former administration of Prime Minister Allen Chastanet of having caused the
the economy to contract by twenty-four percent, it is quite clear, in the face of all
available evidence, that it is the global COVID-19 pandemic that has contributed to this
significant downturn in the economy.

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This contraction is largely explained by the strong dependence of our economy on tourism, its main source of income.

It was a testimony of confidence in Saint Lucia which was able to borrow EC$300 from half a
percentage interest with a moratorium of ten years and a recovery period of forty years.

This money has been used largely to pay government salaries and operating costs and to fill budget shortfalls due to significant revenue declines caused by COVID-19.

Going further, the press release states: “…VAT has been reduced for the benefit of large landowners”.

It is inconceivable that this could make sense, because any reduction in VAT does not benefit owners or business owners, as this money is paid to the government and does not remain as income for the company.

The reduction in VAT by the Allen Chastanet administration ultimately resulted in
cheaper rents and lowers the cost of goods and services for the ordinary Saint Lucian.

The government only lost revenue in the first twelve months and within eighteen months all the losses
were recovered due to increased economic activity.

The wind farm in Dennery constituency is also referred to as a loss, but fails
clarify that the potential project would have been located on private lands that
the government asked the developer to buy from the owners at market prices – he did not.

The $185 million in direct financing contracts for the roads called
heavy duty all had to be paid for by the gasoline tax of $1.50 per gallon of gasoline – again,
not providing all information to the people of Saint Lucia – Another SLP example
‘half-truths.’

This current SLP administration continues to release information that has been debunked
and refuted by the evidence, over and over again.

Just days before its responsibility to present a budget, this SLP government undertook
on a campaign of misinformation and lies.

A wave of unsubstantiated allegations of corruption took the same form, as evidenced by the election campaign, all with the aim of shifting the blame to their inability to manage the economy.

This SLP government will have to borrow massively because it cannot deliver on its promises
made during the campaign and will resort to heavily taxing the people of Saint Lucia.

The Economic Review speaks volumes and testifies to the remarkable performance of the
The administration led by Allen Chastanet during one of the most difficult periods in history
of Saint Lucia and the world.

Record tourist arrivals and opening of new gateways and additional flights in the United States
from Chicago, Dallas, extended flights to Miami, New York, Atlanta and Boston are all
proof of the hard work of the last administration.

In 2021, the economy experienced a growth rate of 6%, second only to Guyana which benefited from oil discoveries.

What the SLP needs to do is hold the people of Saint Lucia accountable for their inability to
everything they promised, especially during the first hundred days in office.

At every opportunity they have attempted to shirk the responsibilities of prudent governance.

While in opposition, the SLP claimed to have all the solutions and all the advice for Saint Lucia.
Now is the time for them to heed their own advice and pass it on to the people.

There is no doubt that the SLP under Philip J. Pierre was unable to put the people first.

Source: United Workers Party. Title photo of (left to right) Prime Minister Philip J. Pierre and opposition United Workers Party leader Allen Chastanet

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About Natalee Broderick

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