The spat between the two former leaders of the New Democratic Party (NDP) continued this week with Sir James Mitchell replying to an Arnhim Eustace open letter published recently.
Eustace’s open letter was a response to Michell’s comment that he (Eustace) was his biggest error and that he wished to apologize to Vincentians for that error.
Eustace in his letter said that Sir James was peeved when he (Eustace) replaced him as Prime Minister and had to take a decision to reduce his salary since he was no longer Prime Minister and the country could not afford to be paying two Prime Minister salaries. He said that decision triggered the spat.
Sir James, calling to the OMG In The Morning programme on BOOM 106.9 on Tuesday, was asked for his response to Eustace’s letter.
“I am not concerned about any derogatory remarks about me said by anybody. I wish them well. I will do what I have to do in this country and those who feel they can do better, go right ahead. Those who feel that I am useless, no problem, no problem. I repeat, I am where I always was, and I leave Arnhim Eustace alone. Let’s just see how much influence he will have historically – in the history of this country,” he said, adding that history would judge Eustace.
“Judgment is now being passed by the people and judgment will be passed in history of who did what. It is always dangerous when you try to say what you have done, or think what you’ve done the ultimate is the people’s success,” Mitchell said.
In his open letter, Eustace said he was “surprised and encouraged” that Sir James decided to take responsibility for the error he (Sir James) described “by apologizing to the people of this nation.”
“The unmistakable scope of that apology, I hope, your acknowledgement that you were forced to hand over leadership, by your depleted popularity, public disaffection with you, and the consequent rise of the worst Prime Minister and administration that this country has ever seen, -Ralph Gonsalves and the ULP,” he wrote.
He noted that Mitchell praised him in the pas for his work as director of finance, as fiscal advisor, as Minister of Finance, as economist and leader and as being responsible for some of the most progressive gains while he (Sir James) was Prime Minister. He said, however, he was not surprised by Sir James’ attack on him.
“As Prime Minister, myself, your attitude changed drastically from the moment I reduced your salary, when I became Prime Minister. I was of the view that the country could not afford neither was it fair to pay two Prime Minister’s salaries. I will never regret that decision,” Eustace wrote.