(Kingstown St Vincent) – Parliament in the Caribbean island of St Vincent and the Grenadines descended in turbulence over allegations against a government senator.
The allegations are that the Government Senator threatened to shoot a 62yro man in the mouth if he called her name following an incident at his residence at Diamond on April 13th, in which the said 62yro man was shot in the leg.
Speaker of house Rochelle Forde and Opposition leader Dr. Godwin Friday had a heated exchange before the parliament was suspended after midday. The opposition leader asked to withdraw from the sitting.
The discourse traversed the road of morality and the house rules.
The opposition leader said to the Speaker that the house is aware of a criminal investigation involving the government senator.
“I had hoped that the matter would have been addressed by the Prime Minister earlier on Tuesday, seeing that it is a matter of public concern, but it was not.”
The Opposition leader went on further to urge the Speaker to use her discretion in the matter.
Speaker Forde responding to the Opposition leader’s request to use her discretion to have the Senator withdraw from the public role until the investigation is over said.
“I have heard you honorable member; however, if you read standing order 41 in conjunction with standing order 81, you will see that discretion is exercised in instances where the rules are silent. If I turn your attention to standing orders 20 and 36 -8, they deal with matters it appears because I am still not sure why you are rising, but they deal with a particular type of matter that must follow a particular type of procedure that I can’t usurp when the rules are clear”.
“So I heard your request, I can’t accede to your request, I will not accede to your request, and I ask therefore that we continue with the questions.”
Following extensive arguments over what should be done and interventions by other MP’s, the Speaker has asked the Opposition leader asked to withdraw from the house; the Opposition leader refused.
The house was suspended momentarily; on its resumption, the Opposition leader who was asked to leave was still present. The Speaker again invited him to withdraw, to which all the opposition members left.