ST GEORGE’S – Eleven days after leading the New National Party (NNP) into defeat, former prime minister Dr Keith Mitchell was on Monday sworn in as the island’s opposition Leader.
“It is both an honour and gratitude that I have accepted the mantle to lead the opposition of the parliament in this country for the immediate period, consistent with section 66 of the constitution of this country,” said Mitchell, giving the assurance that he will not be the NNP political leader after the party holds its convention in 2023.
Mitchell, who had led the NNP to clean sweeps of the 15-member Parliament in the 2013 and 2015 general elections, lost the June 23 poll this year by a 9-6 margin.
“As the current political leader of the New National Party, I do not intend to hold this position beyond the party’s next convention. But, let me add, that process of the next convention should be orderly and timely and no one will push the party to do what he or she wants.
“Let it be very clear I will remain committed to representing the people of North West St George’s who have elected me for the last 38 years,” he said following the ceremony that was held at the Grenada Trade Centre.
Mitchell told the audience that also included the five other elected opposition legislators that Grenada was able to hold free and fair elections and in his view, the result reflected the present will of the people.
“The principles of democracy have to remain sacrosanct to the point that an opposition can emerge victorious because of the way the NNP governed this country,” he said.
“In a world where the wings of totalitarianism are blowing and where democratic norms are being systematically undermined, we should not take what we have done in the period where we had absolute power in the parliament, we must not take it for granted. I am personally satisfied that under our tenure we have done a lot to promote the institution of democratic activity,” he said. (CMC)