Leader of Opposition Marlon Penn is claiming that political bullying and victimisation have reached an all-time high under the Virgin Islands Party government.
During a recent media conference, Penn said that since publicly raising the issue late last year, it has gotten even worse. Penn further claimed that members of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition have seen what he described as a vast increase in reports.
“The issue of victimisation and the issue of cronyism, we are deeply concerned that after our November press conference, where we raised this issue to honourable members, other people of the public and the wider region, that it’s more prevalent now than before. Persons are afraid to speak out, persons are afraid to speak against anything that the government is doing for fear of victimisation,” Penn stated.
He continued: “We get reports daily about the issues that are being faced by persons within this territory, substantiated reports in terms of victimisation of this current administration. A person called me just the other day and they were told, ‘you’re probably not getting this job because you voted for Marlon’.”
Opposition will be a voice for the voiceless
Penn who is also the Eighth District Representative said that he and members of the Opposition will ensure that they all speak out for persons who may feel that they are voiceless in these matters.
He said: “We have to say to the people of this territory that, this is a democracy, the BVI is a democracy, and you have a right to hold your government accountable and you should do that without fear of victimisation or retribution, and the bullying and the victimisation that is happening currently is something that is of grave concern to us in a democracy.”
Board members continuing to over step role
In the aforesaid November 2019 media conference, Penn had stated that he and other members of the opposition had received numerous complaints from employees, alleging that board members from statutory bodies were overstepping their authority and victimising them.
He revealed that the issue continues to persist, with reports of board members still getting involved in the day to day running’s of certain government institutions.