A recently-removed member of Cabinet has made it clear that no-one will be pushing him out of politics but he will be leaving only when his constituents tell him it’s time to go.
The declaration came yesterday from St Michael East Member of Parliament Trevor Prescod as he paid tribute in the House of Assembly to late Prime Minister and former leader of the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) Owen Arthur.
Prescod, who was booted from the Mia Mottley Cabinet in July, told the Lower House that no one will tell him when to walk. His comments also came just 48 hours after long-standing St George North MP Gline Clarke announced he was giving up his representation of the St George North constituency, a BLP stronghold, to take up a diplomatic post in Canada offered to him by Mottley.
He told the House: “I will die with my boots on and nobody, nobody under the sun will ever tell me to walk away. I walk away when the people tell me to walk away. I want to make that very clear to everybody in here.
“There will be a time when there will be a need because I am not here until eternity but as long as I have breath in my body and this intellect remains as lucid, even if other people believe that it is not, I will remain until the people say no more.
“Nobody can’t purchase me. I am not an auctioneer and I am not selling the authority that has been vested in me by the people of St Michael East.”
Prescod, a former member of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP), who joined Arthur’s team under his “politics of inclusion” policy, made several cryptic references to his own political journey and his encounters with Owen Arthur. Prescod said he was honoured to serve the many “poor people” of his constituency from districts that included Licorish Village, My Lord’s Hill and the Ivy. He said the former prime minister was aware of the need for social engineering and he commended Arthur for its inclusion in his overall economic prescriptions for the country.
While praising Arthur’s contribution, Prescod also offered an apology for comments he made during a period of strained relations between them.
In a session witnessed by Arthur’s widow Julie and his two daughters Leah and Sabrina, Prescod said: “At that time there was some tension between Owen and myself and I said on more than one occasion to my colleagues I wanted to have the privilege to say I am sorry . . .
“I have also had the experience in Cabinet prior to 2008 where for the first time in my life I felt as though I was the victim of power in Owen Arthur turning to his right and . . .
saying to me ‘Pressy I will fire you’. . . . I trembled because of the first time I was coming face-to-face with a man with so much power vested in him. (IMC1)