Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves says the time is approaching when the Unity Labour Party (ULP) which he leads will elect a new leader and another person will have to become the Prime Minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG).
Political Leader of the ULP Dr. Gonsalves, 75, made his remarks about leadership and succession planning during an address earlier this week as the ULP celebrated 21 years of governance to the people of SVG.
Gonsalves has been the political leader of the ULP since December 1998. He notes he has been there for almost a qaurter of a century.
“The time will come that I will have to leave as leader of the party and we will have to elect another leader to succeed me. We have to have another person who will become PM. I can’t be there for life because it is in the nature of life and living that you have to refresh and renew… but the party goes on.”
Gonsalves, after assuming leadership of the ULP in 1998, went on to become prime minister in 2001, and since then the ULP has been in power. He believes even when he is gone the political party will remain strong.
“Not too long from now in terms of time, when I pass the mantle of leadership, having had good conversation and good communication with our people, I am sure that in 2025 we will win the elections again on the basis of how the ULP is organised, our principles, our policies and our achievements in government. Frankly, there is no alternative.”
Dr Gonsalves says he has been a political activist for 53 years and is the only person in St Vincent and the Grenadines in the year 2022 who has participated in every election as a candidate since Independence in 1979.
“I have devoted my life of service to the people of St Vincent and the Grenadines and the Caribbean.”
He noted some of his colleagues will also have to make way one day for the younger people, and that decision will be taken at the appropriate time.