PM says Opposition PM’s were too embarrassed to debate the budget

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Prime Minister Gaston Browne Slams Opposition’s Absence as “Irresponsible” During 2024 Budget Debate

Prime Minister Gaston Browne delivered a scathing rebuke to the absent members of the opposition during the wrap-up of the 2024 budget debate in the lower house, calling their non-participation in the crucial annual discussion “most irresponsible.”

In a passionate address to the Parliament, Prime Minister Browne expressed his disappointment in the opposition’s decision to skip the budget debate, emphasizing its significance in the democratic process.

He highlighted that all members, including the opposition, received the necessary documentation and estimates simultaneously, allowing ample time for preparation.

“My colleagues here got the documentation, the estimate, the budget statement precisely the same time as the members of the opposition got theirs,” Browne asserted. “The fact that the members of the opposition did not present themselves is a cop-out.”

Prime Minister Browne suggested that the opposition’s absence may have been a deliberate move to avoid facing the government’s arguments head-on. He claimed that the opposition might have been too embarrassed to repeat what he described as “lies” during the budget statement.

“We would have nailed the lies, and they were too embarrassed to stand up in this Parliament and to continue those lies,” Browne declared.

The Prime Minister further speculated that the opposition’s behavior could be indicative of their lack of capacity and readiness to engage in a meaningful debate.

He insinuated that the opposition’s avoidance of the debate was a form of self-preservation to prevent undermining themselves in the public eye.

“If they had capacity, even if we had decided to start the debate the following day, they would have been in a position, if they were following the debates all along for the last several years, to speak with some authority,” Browne remarked.

Prime Minister Browne also hinted at a possible connection between the opposition’s absence and an upcoming leadership contest within their ranks.

He suggested that the opposition may have sought to avoid public embarrassment before their electoral contest to select a leader.

Prime Minister Browne urged the opposition to recognize the importance of their role in the parliamentary process and called on them to engage in constructive debates rather than resorting to alternative platforms to express their views.

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