(CMC) – Outgoing Prime Minister Allen Chastanet said the results of Monday’s general elections that resulted in his United Workers Party (UWP) suffering a heavy defeat has come as a “shock” but that he remains confident the policies and programmes initiated by his administration over the last five years would put St Lucia “on the right foot to true progress”.
The UWP, which had won the 2016 general elections by an 11-6 margin, was only able to win two seats on Monday, suffering a 13-2 defeat with the other two seats going to independent candidates who at one time were members of the party.
Leader of the St Lucia Labour Party (SLP), Phillip J Pierre is likely to be sworn in later on Tuesday.
In a message, Chastanet thanked all the supporters “who stood with me and our government in this election and over the last five years. We have stayed focused and strong”.
He said he was also thankful for their prayers and that “it was truly a privilege to serve you as prime minister.
“It was also a special honour to serve with a remarkable team of men and women. I am proud of the slate we put forward during this campaign,” he said, adding “I believe that everything we have done is to put St Lucia on the right footing to true progress and our policies will continue to benefit St Lucians from all walks of life.
“If there is one thing that remains true as you look around our island, is the work of the UWP is present in both our country’s physical development and the development of our people.
“I know the results came as a shock to many of you, still I call on you pridefully to continue to hold the torch up high. We will take time to heal, regroup and keep the Flambeau flame burning,” Chastanet said, adding “no one person can define our historic party for us.
“We know in our hearts the core values that have carried us through: honesty, respect, teamwork and commitment,” he said, confirming that he has since called Pierre “to congratulate him and I wish him the best”.
“The United Workers Party is bigger than any one person. We all love this country. Let us pray for peace and tranquillity in St Lucia, as we do our part as good citizens to see progress continue. Stay strong, stay united. May God continue to bless our island home”.