West Basseterre MP has called on the St. Kitts and Nevis prime minister “to do what is right and honourable” and offer diplomatic passports to the opposition.
It emerged this month that Timothy Harris is refusing the official travel document for even the former prime minister and current opposition leader, Denzil Douglas.
Konris Maynard, the youngest parliamentary representative in the St. Kitts and Nevis National Assembly, also urged the prime minister to release the necessary financing approved by the St. Kitts and Nevis National Assembly for the operation of the Office of the Leader of the Opposition.
“Why in God’s name after two and a half years of a government, which claims to be a new government with a new paradigm claiming to be an all-inclusive fair share government, why on earth would they withhold resources from the leader of the opposition?” said Maynard, speaking on Freedom 106.5 FM.
“Why is it that the most distinguished prime minister in the Caribbean, cannot be given a diplomatic passport, by his own country?”.
It has also been revealed that other opposition MP’s have not been given diplomatic passports.
He told listeners he recently attended an official regional forum in Barbados and submitted his regular St. Kitts and Nevis passport at the port of entry.
“When I gave the immigration officer my regular passport, I was asked if this is the passport I want to use as she realised that I was a Member of Parliament. I told her ‘yes’. She did not even know I was never issued a diplomatic passport,” Maynard said.
“All of my colleague MP’s flashed their diplomatic passports. On my departure I saw a Kittitian who is not in Parliament, who no one voted for and who was on the same fight with me sporting a St. Kitts and Nevis Diplomatic Passport. And it is not someone who has official duties.”
He declined to disclose the name of the individual.
Maynard disclosed even an official at the United States Embassy in Barbados on renewing his visitor’s visa and aware that he is a member of parliament in St. Kitts and Nevis “ask me if this is the type of visa that I want.”
“Prime Minister Timothy Harris cannot offer the longest serving prime minister, regardless of his personal feelings about Dr. Douglas a diplomatic passport? Dr. Harris could not offer Dr. Douglas duty-free concession to import a new car in his capacity as Leader of the Opposition? Dr. Harris cannot provide an office to Dr. Douglas as the new Leader of the Opposition to work from?” said Maynard, a first term Member of Parliament, who sits on the opposition benches. Dr. Douglas in his capacity as prime minister had approved duty free vehicles and diplomatic passports for opposition parliamentarians. On becoming Leader of the Opposition in mid-February 2015, Dr. Harris refused to grant concession to Dr. Douglas when he imported a new vehicle.
Maynard said Prime Minister Harris “is our prime minister. We cannot change that and when the tables turn and any respect that is due to him when he leaves office after the next election, he will get and I know my colleagues will agree.”
He lamented that a policy paper that guides privileges for current and past Members of Parliament and Heads of States adopted by the previous Denzil Douglas Labour administration “has been thrown out the window by the Timothy Harris administration.”