BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, September 18, 2019 (Press Unit in the Office of the Prime Minister) – Premier of Nevis, the Honourable Mark Brantley, said that the country is still owed an apology from the Opposition for its role in the 26-month Motion of No Confidence debacle which saw the democratic rights of duly elected Members of Parliament being stifled and trampled upon.
“There has been no acceptance of responsibility in this House today. We have heard the usual bombast, the usual cross talk, the usual loud and unparliamentary behaviour but there has been no acceptance that what we did in 2012 we were wrong and we apologize for what we did. And I would have thought that since they are so interested now in bringing some glasnost and some perestroika that they would have started there,” Premier Brantley as he gave strong support to the Motion of No Confidence Bill, 2019 that is presently before the National Assembly.
The premier said the Bill is near and dear to him as it was he, while serving as Leader of the Opposition then, who filed the motion with the Clerk of the National Assembly in the Denzil Douglas-led administration on December 11, 2012, that went undebated for an unprecedented period of 26 months.
Premier Brantley heavily chastised the former Denzil Douglas-led administration for its actions and stated that it is customary in a parliamentary democracy that Motions of No Confidence are given priority.
“If it was not for what happened over that 26 months, by my tally 780 days, if it was not for that then there would be no need for us to be here [in Parliament] today. We see all around our region, all around parliamentary democracies throughout the world Motions of No Confidence are brought as a matter of course and there is one abiding principle and that is they must take precedence over other business and they must be brought at the earliest possible opportunity. That is the mischief that we are here today trying to deal with Mr. Speaker,” the premier said.
After many unsuccessful attempts to have the Motion of No Confidence debated, the Opposition members sought the intervention of the court and the “Motion of No Confidence cases” of Dr. Hon. Timothy Harris vs. Hon. Curtis Martin, et al. and Hon. Mark Brantley, et al. vs. Hon. Curtis Martin, et al. were filed.
On November 7, 2017, Her Ladyship the Honourable Justice Pearletta Lanns, handed down her decision on the matter, in which she comprehensively ruled in favour of the claimants.
The Motion of No Confidence Bill, 2019, states that where a question of no confidence in the Government is brought before the National Assembly, the question of no confidence shall be determined by Resolution of the National Assembly within a period not exceeding twenty one days.