A promised disruption to the work of the newly elected government made by members of the political Opposition is not being taken lightly by Premier Dr Natalio Wheatley.
Even before Opposition members set foot in the Fifth House of Assembly (HOA), Opposition legislator Julian Fraser has already promised to bring multiple motions of no-confidence against Dr Wheatley’s newly re-elected Virgin Islands Party (VIP) government.
But Premier Wheatley, while speaking at his first post-elections press conference yesterday, hit back at Fraser and the Opposition for what he described as their bad intentions.
“We’ve heard things from, who they have described themselves as a united opposition, as saying that they’re going to have votes of no confidence without anything even coming to the House. So, in my opinion, that shows bad intentions on behalf of the Opposition,” the Premier said.
Dr Wheatley said he welcomed, as part of the democratic process, an Opposition that was willing to hold the government accountable and provide greater transparency and also one that will challenge ideas that need to be challenged.
However, Premier Wheatley added: “What I don’t welcome is ideas that they’re going to seek to disrupt the work of the government for the people of the Virgin Islands
In responding to suggestions that the Opposition is seeking to establish shadow ministries in the House, Dr Wheatley shared that he had no issues with the way that Opposition Members choose to organise themselves. However, he questioned their motives in telegraphing their intention to derail the government’s work.
“I would ask myself, are they interested in supporting the work for the people of the Virgin Islands
or are they interested in power?” Dr Wheatley said. “Are they just wanting to try to make the government look bad or are they willing to cooperate — all 13 of us — in the best interest of the people of the Virgin Islands
Now that the elections are over, the Premier said it is time for lawmakers to work on behalf of the people.
He added that it is important that the 13 elected officials work together in the best interests of the people of the territory and forget ‘about trying to capture power’.