The Working People’s Alliance (WPA) is in an abusive relationship. And it seems to be enjoying its ill-treatment at the hands of APNU+AFC. The party has admitted to being abused. It has conceded that its voice was stifled within the government. But it always seems to be ready to raise its voice in defence of its abuser.
One of its leaders has confessed that the party was bypassed and its advice was not even sought in relation to the oil and gas sector. The party expressed disappointment that it was not at the table during the negotiations with ExxonMobil. However, despite being sidelined, the party is not coming out definitively and calling for a renegotiation of the oil contract.
The party has also acknowledged that it has had no input into constitutional reform. In an interview with another section of the media, the party contends that this process would have gone further had the WPA been at the table.
The WPA should be ashamed of presenting itself as an advocate of constitutional reform. After the positions it has taken in relation to the violations of the Constitution under APNU+AFC, the WPA has become a deformer rather than a reformer of the Constitution.
The WPA was given initially one ministerial seat and even that appointment was done, according to the WPA, without consultation. The PNCR is so contemptuous of the WPA that after the 2015 elections, it selected a WPA Minister without even discussing the matter with the party.
The WPA was treated with scant respect by APNU. The partnership has not been meeting frequently, if at all, and the WPA has had little input into APNU and into the government. One of its leaders was given a second level Ministry after he got ill, and the WPA did not voice any stern objection. In fact, it sought to have him resign as a Minister. When he was reassigned, the party again was slighted. If this is not political abuse then what is?
The WPA is being pushed-around within the government. It has become a hanger-on, doing the government’s bidding without any real input at the decision-making level. It is being abused. And just like your typical victim of abuse, the WPA still continues in this abusive relationship.
It has become like a political parasite, attaching itself on the government and feeding on it for sustenance. And, as a result, the abuse, its abuse, has become more obnoxious. The party has begun to pimp for the ruling coalition, urging persons to vote for the coalition, despite its ill-treatment at the hands of the government. It has not yet received the apology, which one of its leaders said was a condition for its future support of the coalition government. Nevertheless, it is already campaigning for its abuser.
The PPPC has long seen the WPA as a spent force. The PPPC totally ignored the WPA after its ignominious performance at the 1992 elections. The PPPC, realising that the WPA could not even win a seat in any election, opted for an alliance with the United Force, rather than with the party of Walter Rodney.
The WPA is a paper party. It has no real support in the population. It is for this reason that it unconditionally supported the PNCR at the last local government elections, after the Alliance for Change and the PNCR could not reach agreement on contesting the elections jointly.
The AFC was forced to prove that it had support. The PNCR kicked it to the side of the road. The AFC floundered at those elections, pulling in less than 10% of the votes in the areas it contested.
The WPA would never take that risk. It knows that anytime it has to prove its electoral strength, it would be found wanting. Even in Buxton, where the WPA deludes itself into believing that it has support, it will be rejected.
Given its weakness, the survival of the WPA depends on its becoming a political pimp of the PNCR. And so despite its ill-treatment at the hands of the government, the party will continue to be part of an abusive relationship. It may be hoping to get another seat following the forthcoming elections, but it may have to settle for half a seat.
And you can bet that the party will find some justification for accepting that half-seat. After all, it did not seem to have difficulties with the half-man theory, which was rejected by the Caribbean Court of Justice.
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