She recently tabled a no confidence motion in the Freundel Stuart administration – her third against members of the Government since 2008.
Now, outspoken trade unionist Caswell Franklyn is seeking to get Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) Members of Parliament to turn the tables on their leader, Mia Mottley, after her latest attempt to topple the ruling Democratic Labour Party (DLP) was unsuccessful last month.
At issue is Mottley’s involvement in the ongoing general election campaign in St Lucia.
Franklyn is upset over a recent visit to Castries by the BLP leader, which Mottley told Barbados TODAY Thursday night was solely for the purpose of attending a meeting with a legal client. While on the ground in Castries, the BLP leader said she attended political meetings held by both the incumbent St Lucia Labour Party (SLP) and the Opposition United Workers Party (UWP).
However, Franklyn is not buying Mottley’s explanation and has called on the Opposition Leader to come clean on the purpose of her recent St Lucia trip, or face removal by Governor General Sir Elliott Belgrave on the advice of her parliamentary party (sitting Opposition MPs) as the Queen’s Loyal Leader of the Opposition.
Mottley’s presence in St Lucia at the height of political campaigning for Monday’s general election, has created a bit of a regional stir, with prominent Dominican attorney Anthony Astaphan accusing her of exercising poor judgement as one who has ambitions of being Prime Minister of Barbados. He has further accused Mottley of supporting the Allan Chastanet-led UWP over the incumbent Kenny Anthony administration.
Citing a news item carried in Thursday’s edition of Barbados TODAY, Franklyn noted that: “Co-incidentally, two of her [Mottley’s] personal advisors, Debbie Hughes and Lucille Moe, were also in St Lucia at that time.”
The outspoken trade unionist and former personal assistant to Mottley who subsequently fell out of favour with her, also took issue with Mottley’s suggestion that she was “being followed by the Gestapo”.
At the same time, Franklyn referred to another story carried in Friday’s Weekend Nation, in which Prime Minister Kenny Anthony expressed concern that “an unprecedented” number of Barbadian “political operatives” were involved in the UWP’s campaign.
Franklyn went on to note that in a telephone link up from Castries, Anthony had identified a number of people connected to the BLP as being in the forefront of the UWP campaign.
During that link up, Anthony also revealed that Mottley had given him the assurance that she was merely “on holiday” in St Lucia and was not getting involved in St Lucian politics.
Political scientist Peter Wickham has sought to downplay the significance of Mottley’s visit to Castries, saying it has become common practice for political leaders in the Caribbean to move around and observe election campaigns.
However, another political scientist Dr Tennyson Joseph has said it is important to know why Mottley was in Castries at the height of political campaigning for the June 6 poll.
And contending that Mottley was not being upfront on the matter, Franklyn today said: “If I am to put the stories from both Barbados TODAY and the Nation together, it would appear that Mottley was in St Lucia strictly to provide legal representation for a client, while being merely on holiday and she felt it necessary to have her close political advisors tag along.”
Franklyn argued that someone was not telling the truth – “Either the Nation, Barbados TODAY, Anthony or Mottley”, he suggested, adding that it was left to the Barbadian public to decide.