Caribbean political analyst Peter Wickham noted, however, that in a situation where the PNP is leading by a statistically insignificant five percentage points, a long campaign could come back to haunt Miller. “By calling an early election, by setting the date seven weeks away, she has effectively surrendered one of the most effective tools in the arsenal of the Westminster PM,” he continued, referring to the fact that the British system, which many Caribbean countries have adopted, allows the prime minister alone to name the date for a general election.
Source: The BostonBanner
Many people agree that the next general election in Barbados will be hotly contested for a number of reasons. We have a fourth term government which has been embroiled in one controversy after the next. There is Prime Minister Owen Arthur whose popularity has been on the decline in recent years; this drop in Arthur’s popularity is not good news for the Barbados Labour Party (BLP). Many of the BLP candidates owe a deep debt of gratitude to Arthur for their elevation to the Lower House and on becoming vested after 10 years to qualify for a government pension.
Many political pundits agree that there is always a tiredness which will visit fourth term governments.
Recently, Peter Wickham, political scientist and the brains behind CADRES, has been under severe public scrutiny because of his controversial comments. Let BU add that we commend Peter for not being timid, like some of his colleagues, about making his views known. However, we do agree with those who have formed the impression that Peter’s perspectives often appear to have a DLP bias. Having said that, we have to congratulate Peter on the accuracy of his polls to date. We were particularly proud of the comment which we have quoted above which turned out to be true about the outcome of the recent Jamaican election. As far as we can recollect, his polls have always been on the bulls-eye with the exception of the St. Lucia poll which we are prepared to accept was done at a time which would have made it difficult to accurately predict the outcome. Even if BU accept CADRES got it wrong, one out of several is not a bad record.