Local attorney Jamal Smith has questioned the motives behind former Deputy Premier Dr Kedrick Pickering’s political campaign and his attempt at a reset.
Dr Pickering lost his Seventh District post at the 2019 elections after 20 consecutive years to current Premier Dr Natalio Wheatley. But he has since decided to campaign as a Territorial At-Large candidate at the upcoming elections after making a previous attempt months ago to campaign for his old seat.
Smith, in the meantime, prefaced his comments on the Talking Points radio show recently by stating that he held the deepest respect for Dr Pickering and noted that Dr Pickering was a dear friend of his whom he looked up to personally.
“I have serious concerns about someone who has been in elected office for so long and failed to produce – for his own people, the people who put him there time, and time again – and now all of a sudden, you’re asking for a reset,” Smith said. “I’m kind of thinking, ‘is this genuine’?” Smith asked.
He continued: “Where is it coming from? What would make us feel that you have the ability to reset anything based on your past actions?”
And while acknowledging that persons can be motivated and passionate enough to enter the current political fray even in the prevailing circumstances, Smith said the motivation of some persons worries him.
“We’ve been plagued with the question of who is behind these politicians? We had the issue with the NDP (National Democratic Party) [and] whether they were controlled by the BVI Investment Club. That came up in the COI
(Commission of Inquiry
),” Smith argued.
Smith said residents are always trying to understand who really controls local politicians. “I need to feel comfortable when I cast my vote this election; that the people I’m voting for are not people who, 10 months after I cast my vote, I’m then learning these people are in bed with the very people that I’m concerned about,” he stated.
False prophet leaders
Smith also decried the culture of politicians in the BVI that emerge in the ‘wee hours of the night’ claiming that they have been sent by God.
“We’ve had that kind of culture and it’s a big issue for us that we rely on this religious idea that we are some form of Christian society and the politicians feed into that and the public somehow follows that,” Smith explained while noting that residents are programmed this way.
The attorney added he was also worried that the BVI will have another false prophet rising up claiming that someone is possibly appointed by divinity.
“Let’s be blunt, it happened the last elections,” Smith stated.