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Friday, February 27, 2015


For a moment, I thought I was NOT living in a democracy; but I subsequently realised that the sequence of events which led me to that realisation might barely be limited to a single trade union which culture and behaviour may not necessarily generally reflect democracy in St. Lucia; and hence, there might not be need to generalise its apparent “Idi Amin” - type character to the broader society.

The paradox, however, is the trade union is not an exclusive entity insulated from the society and that its character may very well be a reflection of the character of the broader society. More importantly, the workers who belong that trade union are perhaps “the cream of the crop”, "the intellectual elite" of this country running the engine of government, which led me to ask: “Is this also how some of her members run the business of government?”

In any case, was the "sample" of the membership which assembled in the CSA Hall to move a “motion of confidence” in their embattled president cognisant of the enormity of the situation before them and all the facts surrounding it?

If logic were equivalent to truth, then the answers to the questions hereinbefore raised would have been obvious; but I admit that I may be wrong in all the theoretical claims I have raised above! The only matter that may be (apparently) true is the issue that all the pieces of the CSA puzzle do not fit and hence may have created a measure of cognitive dissonance in the minds of many thinkers, some of whom have gone as far as asking Mary to bow out gracefully in order to save the CSA.

Let us quickly review some of the pieces of the CSA puzzle and try to put them in a perspective:

In "who" was the Motion of Confidence moved? Was it a motion of confidence in the President or Mary Isaac? Surely and according to Marry Isaac herself, she is NOT currently the president of the CSA; she is now the sitting general secretary, albeit temporarily. 

The current president is the vice-president (Mr Wilfred Pierre) for two reasons: (1) Mary cannot serve as president and secretary simultaneously; (2) she was legally removed from that office as president by a petition.

Many questions remain pending about the treatment and fate of the counter-petition which gave birth to the meeting. The Powerhouse has been reliably informed that the counter-petition (along with the first petition and Mary’s appointment as GS) will soon be the subject of a judicial review. Indeed, the Powerhouse understands that there may well be an injunction against the Senator/CSA president/General Secretary Ag while a judicial resolution is being pursued.

In the meantime, let’s (re)examine some of the matter-of-fact issues:

1.   Senator Mary was not the president of the CSA when the motion of confidence in the president was moved:

2.   The president “won” a motion of confidence vote after she was booted out of office.

3.  The president went on to appoint the Vice-President as president while temporarily demoting herself to act as General Secretary (GS) after was booted out of office 

4.   The president still speak as the "de facto" president while holding the office as GS.

5.   The president has been dishonestly agitating for the "de-legislation" of the 5% civil service wage cut as a condition for negotiation with the GNT, thereby stalling the entire negotiation process involving the other public sector unions who have all accepted a wage freeze for the triennium.

6.   The president accepted a political position as Opposition Senator and contends that there is no conflict of interest between her senatorial and presidential positions

7.   The president openly defied Staff Orders and the Ministry of the Public Service to convene a meeting to move a motion of confidence in her.

How will those issues play out in a court of law remains to be seen. Suffice it to say that no matter how sad a day it may turn out to be for the CSA, we expect the Laws of St. Lucia to solve the “puzzle” for us and to bring closure to the unfortunate and unnecessary “fires” which now plague the CSA and have the organisation in a state of siege.

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