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JIS News

The defeat of the ruling St. Lucia Labour Party (SLP), led by Dr. Kenny Anthony, in general elections on December 11, should not affect the nation’s commitment to host the ICC Cricket World Cup (CWC) next year, says Senior Legal Counsel for the ICC CWC West Indies 2007 Inc., Derek Jones.
“I would be very surprised if there was any impact whatever, as the obligation in every country to host the Cricket World Cup is a national obligation. It is not the obligation of a ruling party or opposition party and frankly, I would expect that the incoming government in St. Lucia would pick up where the last one left off,” he told JIS News.
Mr. Jones stressed that the St. Lucia Local Organising Committee (LOC), which has responsibility to oversee all preparations for the event, is a subsidiary of the government and as such, a change of government should not affect preparations.
“The LOC belongs to the government of St. Lucia, just as our LOC belongs to the government of Jamaica and that is the case right throughout the region,” he informed.
“The money that has been spent to build the stadiums and infrastructure is the nation’s money, not the ruling party’s money, and I would therefore, expect that the new government is going to continue without skipping a beat,” Mr. Jones said.
He also said that the holding of elections in St. Lucia helped to dispel any notion that host venue nations were forbidden to hold elections close to the staging of the event, which begins in March next year.
“I do not know where the rumour started. It is a rumour that has enjoyed great life throughout the region,” he added.
“There is no such requirement. The calling of election is the prerogative of the Prime Minister and there is nothing anywhere in the arrangements for the Cricket World Cup that speaks about whether a government can or cannot have an election,” Mr. Jones said, quipping that the rumour had made “a heap of runs and now has finally come to the end of its innings.”
Eighty-two year-old former Prime Minister, Sir John Compton, who is also regarded as the father of St. Lucia’s independence, came out of retirement to lead the United Workers Party to victory, claiming 11 of 17 seats in the House of Assembly.