RESPONDING TO SIR RONALD SAUNDERS’ NONSENSE
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viagra times;”>Last week, we did a detailed analysis of the victory of Baroness Patricia Scotland who was elected on 27 November as the new Secretary General of the Commonwealth. In doing so, she defeated an aggressive, ugly and nasty campaign run by Sir Ronald Saunders, a Guyanese émigré with citizenship of Antigua and Barbuda and who served first as High Commissioner in London under Lester Byrd, the then Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda and now serves as Ambassador to Washington D.C. for Prime Minister Gaston Brown, now Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda. Sir Ronald whose birth name is Singh, changed his name to Saunders and obtained a knighthood under Mr. Byrd. He is believed to hold British and Barbadian residency. He boasts of how when he was High Commissioner to London he gave Jacob Zuma, a then exile under apartheid, the ability to travel by supplying him with an Antiguan passport. He claimed that this would sew up victory for him in the race against Baroness Scotland.
The campaign he ran against her was that she was not a real Caribbean woman. That she left Dominica where she was was born with her parents when she was 12 for England. That she never helped the Caribbean when she was Attorney General for England and Wales. That she is still a sitting member of the legislature of Britain namely the House of Lords and questioned to whom she would be loyal. This is a curious argument coming from someone one with multiple residencies himself and who has spent a fair time away from his home country Guyana and has even changed his birth name. It would seem objectively that he is a bit of an anglophile and therefore in no position to challenge the credentials of others on that score. He also came to Nassau and revealed the private discussions of a meeting with Bahamian Prime Minister, giving the wrong impression about the Prime Minister’s support for him. When it was corrected by the Foreign Ministry, a site supporting him online called Caribbean News Now attacked the Foreign Minister, and said that Fred Mitchell was only supporting Baroness Scotland because of a personal relationship with her, a married woman. This was real nastiness. It turns out though that he who laughs last, laughs best. In the first round of voting at the Commonwealth Heads of Government he got the least votes, bested by Baroness Scotland who got the most and by the African candidate.
His own government by the mouth of his own Foreign Minister Max Rodriguez told the Antigua Observer that when Sir Ronald lost in the first round, they withdrew his name from consideration and in the second round they supported Baroness Scotland. So Sir Ronald lost and his boast that she had no chance of winning went down in flames. Now to the post-election period. Since that time, Sir Ronald’s friends and we put that charitably , have been in the press in the region scorching the earth. His friends have accused Baroness Scotland of being a stooge for the white countries and for reinstating imperialism. His friends have attacked her as pursuing an LGBT agenda on the Caribbean and Africa on behalf of the white countries.
On Thursday 2ndDecember, a piece appeared in The Tribune under the headline LORD MITCHELL in which the writer accused Mr. Mitchell of engineering the victory of the Baroness against the better interests of the Caribbean and The Bahamas. This is a monstrous lie. The article claimed that Mr. Mitchell wanted to have tea and crumpets at the House of Lords. It was nasty and defamatory, even questioning his credentials in the fight against apartheid which was a major aspect of Mr. Mitchell’s past political life. Never mind though: the fact is Baroness Scotland has won. She is best for an organization that is searching for relevance and a role to play in a changed world. The Bahamas gets substantial help from the Commonwealth Fund For Technical Corporation. The Canadian Government under the new Justin Trudeau has promised to reengage. So that is a start. To hell with Sir Ron Saunders and all his idle propaganda. He is just a sore loser.