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What’s Next for the UDP?

With the war of words and a seeming undercurrent to remove Faber as the Leader of the Opposition, it begs the question as to whether the United Democratic Party is crumbling. Some sources within the party say that former leader Dean Barrow along with other senior party members like Michael Finnegan have left a vacuum within the UDP. Shyne Barrow told Love News today that he is confident that the party can be strengthened but that it would take open and honest communication primarily, among its members and elected representatives.

Shyne Barrow, Area Representative, Mesopotamia: Rebuilding is a very difficult, arduous, tedious process but we have to make sure that we can go through this process and I believe we will emerge stronger and better. We have to chart a course for the next forty years of the UDP, forty/fifty years and so we have to improve from what has been and decide what will be. So these difficulties that we have I would have preferred to deal with internally but I must say it has been difficult to have open and honest conversations without extreme measures being taken by the leader of the party to silence those that wanted to be honest internally. Because I would not have gotten to this point had we been able to have our say internally at the NPC because again I don’t run the party, the party leader does not own the party, the party belongs to the National Convention which is the five hundred and eighty delegates and the thirty one constituencies area representatives, caretakers and their executive committee. So when we have urgent matters arising involving the party leader and scandals and crisis etc it is an emergency and the body that holds the highest authority in the party should be convened and certainly it has been frustrating to get that done. I must say that I was informed today that that will happen next week and so I don’t want to say more because I do believe these issues are best dealt with internally but I had to expose the duplicitous nature of some and I wanted all honesty and all transparency and all accountability. We have to be accountable for what we say to our colleagues and to courses of actions that we agreed to and it is clear that what was being agreed to you know was not necessarily being done in an honest fashion.”

As for the recent viral video of Patrick Faber acting out in a fit of rage with the mother of his daughter, Barrow told Love News that efforts were made to resolve this issue and to institute damage control, but Faber had refused to cooperate.

Shyne Barrow, Area Representative, Mesopotamia: “I do agree on a zero tolerance policy. We all have fallen short and I have said that publicly that I myself have fallen short but that does not mean that we won’t hold each other accountable. If we want to be a new UDP, if we want to restore the confidence and the trust of the public we have to demonstrate at all times that we are worthy of that restoration of public trust and confidence and that means holding our leaders accountable. I am very careful because accusations can be made against anyone. Accusations have been made against me so there’s a bigger picture here it’s not just the video that surfaced there are many other factors in play but certainly I can say to you that there was an effort made to resolve this internally and it was rejected by the party leader. There was a proposal made how to mitigate the circumstances and there was a cry to deliberate internally what we would do but if the position is that nothing is wrong and everything is okay and there’s nothing to discuss while others of us feel that there is an emergency then that is when you know we become vocal publicly. I know there was discussion of a leadership core meeting and a leadership core saying everything is okay that’s only five people. Again the National Party Council is the highest authority in the party other than the National Convention which is when we meet to vote on who will be the leader and whatever other issues are before us and I feel a circumstance like this it is an emergency and it deserves an emergency convening of the National Party Council. So again I would like to see that take place and I would like to report back to the public that we have decided on a course of action that again sends the message it could be that after all of this is said and done that the National Party Council says you know what these are the measures to take maybe a leave of absence, it may be to seek counselling or you know what nothing should be done , the party leader has learnt his lesson and the fact that we’ve even come this far and addressed it with this urgency is enough for him to learn his lesson and get another chance I’m all about second chances but the point is we have to send a message to the public that this is not business as usual. That no longer will we cover and protect each other but we will hold each other accountable and we will do what is in the best interest of public confidence and public policy.”