By Davion Smith, BVI News Staff
With suggestions of a by-election coming directly from the Office of the Supervisor of Elections, Opposition Leader Andrew Fahie has made his position known that he is completely against a by-election happening this close to the constitutionally due general election.
“It makes absolutely no sense. The general election is in a couple months and you could say weeks away so I do not see why we should spend taxpayers’ money doing a by-election,” Fahie said while speaking during the Virgin Islands Party (VIP) Let’s Talk radio programme Wednesday evening.
The VIP Chairman also reasoned that going to the polls for a by-election puts an unnecessary hassle on the electorate.
“Our people don’t need to be going through this a second time,” said Fahie, who told BVI News that the VIP is in ‘a state of readiness’ regardless of the course of action taken.
Continuing with his list of reasons that a by-election should not be held, the Opposition Leader said: “The next thing is that our government has reached a section in their political life where I feel we need to free them from each other and get to the general election to allow the people of the territory to decide whether they want ‘NDP one’ or ‘NDP two’, or whether they want the VIP or whoever else’s new party that is coming out.”
Fahie was referring to the rift within the NDP that has begun to fester in the public domain.
Three executive members of the Myron Walwyn-led NDP have consecutively resigned from the party recently — one of those resignees being Archibald Christian, a sitting legislator in the NDP government.
More NDP legislators are expected to follow considering that Health Minister Ronnie Skelton is being reported as the leader of a new, breakaway party being called the Progressive Virgin Islands Movement (PVIM). PVIM is facetiously being branded ‘NDP two’ considering that its members were NDP supporters up to very recently.
Meanwhile, political observers suspect that, upon his anticipated resignation from the NDP, Skelton will bring with him supporters such as Second District Representative Melvin ‘Mitch’ Turnbull who he shared defeat with during the NDP internal elections back in June.
The PVIM, the VIP, and the NDP are three of at least four political organisations that will vie the for the majority of the electoral seats during the general election which is constitutionally due by the summer of 2019.
The Julian Fraser-led Progressives United party will also be throwing a hat in the political ring.
Decision rests on Premier
According to the Virgin Islands Constitution, there must be a dissolution of the House of Assembly before a general election can occur. This dissolution can only happen early if the Premier of the Virgin Islands gives the say-so, BVI News understands.
“We just need to move towards dissolving the [legislative] council (the House of Assembly) and go into a general election and let the chips fall where they may,” argued Fahie while reiterating that he is against the by-election.
A by-election is being considered for the Fifth Electoral District because the representative of that constituency Delores Christopher had an untimely death due to illness.
She died on October 16.
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