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7/3/2018 
GRENADA OPPOSITION PARTY LEADER STEPS DOWN  
Political leader of the Grenada’s main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Nazim Burke, resigned as head of the party on Sunday. Deputy leader Joseph Andall, will now take over as interim leader after a unanimous resolution was passed by the party’s General Council.

In a speech, Burke said, “I announce my resignation as political leader of the National Democratic Congress with immediate effect. I do so with no regrets, bitterness or resentment but in the genuine desire to afford the party the opportunity to explore other leadership options as we embark on this journey of renewal and rebuilding our party to achieve its organizational goals.”

Burke led his party to a disastrous loss in the March 13 elections earlier this year. For the second consecutive election, the NDC won no seats versus the New National Party (NNP) led by Dr. Keith Mitchell. This resignation was expected and comes as no surprise to many in the party and Grenadian political circles.

In his address to the general council, the former party leader stated, “According to the figures released by the Parliamentary Elections Office, some 21,000 registered voters chose not to exercise their franchise on Election Day. Whatever the particular reason for their individual decision, the clear and unmistakable implication to be drawn from this is that neither party was able to sufficiently inspire them with what they had to offer so as to move them to vote—either for change or for a continuation of what now exists.”

Many key allies and senior party members had also been pushing for Burke to go, with the general perception of friend and foe alike being that he was unable to build alliances to make the party stronger.

It was notable that former NDC leader and Prime Minister, Tillman Thomas, in whose administration Burke had served as minister for finance from 2008 to 2013, had not been vocal for Burke’s cause during the run-up to the 2018 general election.

Peter David, a former Cabinet minister in the Thomas administration, who resigned his post as secretary general of the NDC to join Mitchell’s NNP and now serves as minister for foreign affairs in the Mitchell administration, said months prior to the election that he holds Burke responsible for the collapse of the Thomas administration and that Burke was the chief leaker and instigator conspiring against Thomas and those activities led to the NDC loss in 2013.

During his resignation speech, Burke thanked the members of the NDC and the people of Grenada who supported him and the party in the last election, along with giving thanks to friends, family members and God for allowing him the opportunity to stand.

Andall, who was the NDC candidate for the constituency of St Patrick West, is, according to his biography on the party’s website, an accomplished educator with a specialisation in modern language education. An alumnus of Grenada Boys’ Secondary School, T.A. Marryshow Community College, Morehouse College, and the University of the West Indies, he holds a B.A. in Political Science, Master’s in Modern Language Education, and Postgraduate Diplomas in Hispanic and Latin American Studies. He has also worked as a professional interpreter, in addition to teaching Spanish as a second language.

Andall faces a political reality in which the NDC has no seats in parliament, is a party fractured over the course of the last several years, with low-voter interest in politics in general and a strong and cunning adversary in Dr. Keith Mitchell, who is now in his fifth non-consecutive term as prime minister of Grenada.

Along with leading the political tenor of the NDC, part of Andall’s mandate will be to lead the party in the process of preparing for its next convention when a new leader will be elected, a process that is scheduled to take place no later than March 31, 2019, according to an NDC press release.

Source: Caribbean News Now
 

 


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GRENADA OPPOSITION PARTY LEADER STEPS DOWN