Election: Sir Lester says PM spoke out of turn

Source: Antigua and Barbuda Labour Party

Sir Lester Bryant Bird, Member of Parliament (MP) has declared that he alone is qualified to make public pronouncements about his future candidacy for St. John’s Rural East.

While he declined to state outright if he intended to contest the seat again, the former two-term prime minister revealed that he is not opposed to Maria Bird-Browne, his niece, running in that constituency in the next general elections.

“She will be as good as several others who put their names. She has ability,” he declared.

 Regarding his own candidacy, he said, “I do think that as the former prime minister and as the person who has been there for so long, that at least I should be allowed the civility to make the pronouncement rather than for me to be reading it in the newspaper. I do not think that does me any service.”

Sir Lester’s statements to OBSERVER media in an interview on Wednesday, came after his niece’s husband Prime Minister Gaston Browne, stated firmly on Monday, “Lester Bird is not fit to run and he will not be allowed to run.”

Browne’s comments were published in The Daily Observer and aired on OBSERVER Radio. Sir Lester has since suggested that Browne spoke out of turn.

Browne has argued that Sir Lester must not “be allowed” to “subject himself to the ridicules of partisan politics.” The prime minister said being a National Hero and being high in age, Sir Lester should remain above that level.

However, Sir Lester argued that his years of service in government, and being knighted and named a National Hero are precisely what demand that his future in politics be announced “in manner that does me some kind of respect.”

(More in today’s Daily Observer)

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