Two of the United Progressive Party (UPP) Members of Parliament whose election victories were this morning confirmed by the Court of Appeal are not only elated about the outcome but are ready to press ahead with their jobs as members of Cabinet.
They were still celebrating along with their supporters after the ruling, but Education Minister Dr Jacqui Quinn-Leandro, MP for St George, and Tourism Minister John Maginley, who represents St John’s Rural North, told Observer shortly after the announcement, that it’s now time to get on with the business of the country.
The two, who along with Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer, were anxiously waiting to see whether Justice Louise Blenman’s March 31st ruling would be overturned, said a weight had been lifted off the country’s shoulders.
“I am very, very happy with the erudite decision of eminent jurists in this case. The people of St George’s can now breathe. We’re happy that we do not have to go through an election,” Dr Quinn-Leandro said.
“The country was almost on a hiatus; everybody was waiting to exhale, pretty much,” she added, contending that the country had “lost significant ground in terms of our economic affairs, with investors waiting to see what would happen over the past two years before they could make a move to invest in this country.”
Maginley agreed. He said while it is important to allow UPP supporters to celebrate today, “tomorrow we have a job to do and it’s very important that we get back to that.”
“This thing is about the soul of Antigua & Barbuda. We’ve won this battle and now the war continues,” he said.
Reflecting on the 20 months of uncertainty, Dr Quinn-Leandro became emotional as she talked about what she described as the ALP’s divisive and unnecessary election petition.
Choking back tears, she thanked her constituents for continuing to express confidence in her leadership and also expressed sincere gratitude to the “prayer warriors” whom she said had always supported her.
Maginley also thanked his constituents and others who stood by him.