Prime Minister and leader of the Dominica Labour Party (DLP) Roosevelt Skerrit and his wife Melissa Poponne Skerrit earlier today at the polling station( Picture by Sandy Pitt)
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In his election victory speech tonight, Prime Minister and leader of the Dominica Labour Party (DLP) Roosevelt Skerrit called for restraint, respect and calm in the country.
In his address to the nation at 9:15 p.m. Skerrit put a hold on all celebrations which would traditionally follow an election win and declared Sunday as a day of national peace, prayer, reconciliation and healing.
“I am asking for all churches to hold services at 10 in the morning so that the entire country will be praying at the same time while appealing to all candidates who contested the elections earlier today, to lead by example and attend the services.
This win was the fourth for Skerrit as Prime Minister and the DLP's fifth consecutive victory at the polls. The leader said given all the tensions of the last few weeks leading up today’s election, he has asked all DLP candidates to suspend celebrations until next weekend.
He said next weekend when there is a greater sense of calm, they would then hold the victory parties, motorcades and celebrations. Skerrit also announced there will be a national ecumenical service of thanksgiving at that time.
The party leader, in his 14-minute address, said: “As Prime Minister I cannot allow the United Workers Party (UWP) campaign of road blocking, recklessness and intimidation and abuse to continue indefinitely and unabated. There must and will be respect for law and order in this country”.
Skerrit said it was only by God’s grace and mercy that no one was seriously hurt in the lead up to the elections.
“In the interest of the country, I call on the UWP’s leadership and supporters to halt the conduct and behaviour of the last few weeks. Concede defeat and let the country come together”, he said, noting that an Opposition is an important institution in a democratic society.
The Prime Minister appealed to Dominicans to move forward in unity.
“We must all now put Dominica first in communities, families and at a national level, there must now be peace. Let’s hold on to Dominica strong”.
Skerrit assured the country that the DLP is committed to the dual task of healing and building the country. (CM)