Awkward and invidious!
That’s how Prime Minister Mia Mottley has described the decision by Bishop Joseph Atherley to cross the floor a week after he was elected by the people of St Michael West on a Barbados Labour Party (BLP) ticket in the May 24 general election.
“If that were his intention, he should have communicated that to [his constituents] before Election Day,” Mottley said during a nationally televised one-on-one interview with veteran journalist David Ellis last night in which she suggested that the bishop’s move “does raise the issue of trust and we must ask whether we are doing a disservice by allowing this to fester rather than treating to the right of recall for those who cross the floor.
“This is something Trinidad has, and I strongly believe in it,” she stressed, while assuring the people of St Michael West that her ruling BLP would continue to look after their interests.
However, she strongly questioned how Atherley, who is yet to formally resign from the BLP, went about the process, especially in light of the fact that he was elected a BLP representative.
“Clearly what was offered to Bishop Atherley was not filling his eyes, and he felt strongly that we needed an Opposition to the Government,” Mottley said.
During her 90-minute interview, the Prime Minister also expressed strong support for term limits, saying, “I believe a Prime Minister should serve two consecutive terms only, and I also do not advocate situations where you can come back some years later after having served two terms as Prime Minister already.
“In my view, we have enough competent people for whom two terms should be enough for them to do what they have to do and then move off the scene altogether,” she insisted.