The elders… to settle PNC’s standoff? 

There’s a report in the press from Hamilton Green, declaring that “PNC Elders” will be intervening to resolve the impasse in the party on the selection of a new Opposition Leader from its midst. Your Eyewitness NOW understands why Green’s been signing his letters to the press, “Elder Hamilton Green”. He just means he’s a “PNC Old Head”, as we say in the vernacular. And why shouldn’t he? He’s been there from goodness knows when – and certainly during the bloodbath in the 1960s, when he earned his fearsome reputation. The man knows where a lot of (PNC) skeletons are buried!!
The Old Heads listed are Green, Corbin, Sampson, Yvonne Harewood-Benn, Allan Munroe and Jeffrey Thomas. Your Eyewitness was surprised not to see Oscar Clarke’s name in the list. He’s not an “old head”? Or is it that Green resents Oscar because, when Hoyte kicked him (Green) out of the PNC, Oscar took his place!!? Ahh for the days when the consigliere from Dartmouth, Ptolemy Reid, could summon any upstart in the party and straighten them out!! Seems like the PNC’s arrived at a point where everyone figures they all put on their pants one leg at a time!! Not like when Burnham was around, and he was the one and only Kabaka!!
So, what are these worthies going to do to change the status quo?? Meaning, what leverage do they have over the major player holding up the anointment of the LOO – and that IS singular!! Granger, and Granger ONLY, is the man who’s calling the shots right now!! No matter how they slice it or dice it, or purée it, the Clerk of the National Assembly needs a letter from Granger – as the Representative of the (PNC) List (ROTL) – to first send someone to replace an MP who’s resigned. And Granger ain’t indicating his choice in whatever shape or form!!
Some folks got their hopes up when Ex-Ed Minister Henry said her Budget Speech would be her last, and figured – not unreasonably – that she’d be resigning. But she flattered to deceive when, in that speech, she pointedly indicated she wasn’t enamored with the newbies clamouring to come into Parliament. Granger was the man!! So we now hear that she hasn’t OFFICIALLY resigned!! Granger can now look the elders – one of whom is beholden to him for his massive pension and national award – in the eye and ask, “What can I do, boss?”
Now, to change people’s minds you can use force, moral persuasion or education – or a combination. The elders, however, have no force or moral standing – and education will take years.
By which time the PPP will romp back into office in 2025!! And the rock rolls down the hill again!!

…in the Budget
Among other things, budgets redistribute resources to various sections of the society. So, we see “pensions” being doled out to elders, rather than leaving them under trees to die in their dotage. Now, there’s been some serious criticisms, not only from the Opposition – which seem to feel they have to criticise EVERYTHING! – that the $3000 increase to bring pensions up to $28,000 monthly just ain’t enough for elders to keep body and soul together.
Some – not the Government, mind you – have retorted that like the fabled ant of yore, who saved crumbs for a rainy day, so should have the elders. And if they’d worked for at least 15 years, they’d be collecting NIS pensions also. But that’s not the point, is it? When you consider that the increase amounts to $100 a day and food prices have skyrocketed, the criticisms have resonated in the 65,000-person over-65 brigade.
They amount to 10 seats – and, if mobilised, can become one of the much-talked-about “swing votes”!! Elders’ powers!!

…in the age of COVID-19
The elders are the demographic most at risk of dying during this COVID-19 pandemic. Apart from vaccines, shouldn’t their pension be increased to at least take care of the necessary vitamin boost??