Political observers are wrinkling their brows, trying to figure out Prime Minister Keith Mitchell’s reasons for bypassing Senator Sheldon Scott as the only Parliamentary Secretary not to have been pumped up to a ministerial position.
Over the previous week the nation had been hyped up with curiosity over a promised reshuffle and speculations ranged far and wide as to who the affected officials would be.
Rumours were leaked that Minister for Education Anthony Boatswain would be one of the more prominent casualties and that Senator Scott had long been targeted for some kind of adjustment by the prime minister.
As it turned out in Dr. Mitchell’s Tuesday night national address, Hon. Boatswain remained untouched but not Senator Scott. In what many see as a demotion Scott has been removed as Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Religious Affairs and installed in a similar position in the Prime Minister’s Ministry with responsibility for information.
On the other hand, his three fellow parliamentary secretaries, Senator Winston Garraway, Hon. Alvin Da Breo and Senator Simon Steill have all been promoted to junior ministers and have therefore joined the Cabinet of Minister.
Senator Dabreo has risen from Parliamentary Secretary with responsibility for ICT to the Minister of State in the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands, Forestry, Fishery and the Environment.
Senator Garraway who previously occupied the position Sen. Scott has now been assigned to is the Minister of State in the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Religious Affairs and Senator Steill moves from Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture to Minister of State in the Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development.
The prime minister explains the adjustments by saying as head of cabinet he has the responsibility to constantly monitor the performance of cabinet members to analyze effectiveness and at the same time “grow the team so the men and women who serve become more effective leaders with a well-rounded experience.”
All these new appointments take effect from June 15.
Analysts are nonplussed as to the particular reasoning in the case of Sen. Scott; is his effectiveness in question, is he being given experience to prepare him for bigger things or has he transgressed in other ways?
Weeks ago opinions began to make the rounds that Sen. Scott had fallen out of the grace with the Grenadian Word had it that the senator had been accused of some unsavoury behaviour in his private life and this had upset Dr. Mitchell but he categorically denied this when questioned by a local weekly newspaper.