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Posted: Thursday 4 April, 2024 at 5:13 PM

Richards to step aside as leader of the People’s Action Movement

By: Staff Reporter,

    BASSETERRE, St. Kitts -- SHAWN Richards, the current leader of the People’s Action Movement (PAM) and former Deputy Prime Minister, has confirmed that he will not seek reelection to helm the party.


    During a press conference on Thursday (Apr. 4), Richards announced his decision, noting his pride in serving as the longest-serving People's Action Movement parliamentarian and Sandy Point representative. He expressed gratitude for the unwavering dedication to constituents and the party's guiding principles.


    "With a heart full of gratitude and hope, I sit before you today to humbly announce my decision not to seek leadership at our next convention when this current three-year term comes to an end. Therefore, I am officially stepping down as the leader of the People's Action Movement. After careful contemplation and many heartfelt prayers, I am at peace with this decision, for as the scripture reminds us, to everything there is a season."


    Richards has remained relatively out of the limelight since falling out of government in 2022, though he engages in debates in the National Assembly.


    "As I reflect on this extraordinary chapter as your leader in the People's Action Movement, I am filled with hope and confidence in our continued progress and prosperity. The achievements we have realized, the challenges we have overcome, and the resilience we have displayed serve as a testament to our collective strength and unwavering commitment to the principles that guide us.


    Richards served as the Deputy Prime Minister within the coalition Team Unity Administration under the leadership of Dr. Harris. He was one of several ministers who spoke up against what was transpiring within the government at the time.


    Though he has relinquished the leadership of the party, Richards emphasized that he will remain actively involved.


    "Let me be clear, stepping aside does not mean stepping away. I remain committed to the People's Action Movement's ideals and St. Kitts and Nevis' future success. I pledge my full support through the transition, offering counsel to ensure a smooth, effective handover.


    “This moment calls on all party members and supporters to unite behind our new leader, whoever he or she may be. Unity has always been PAM's strength, and as we embark on this transition, standing together in reforming our shared principles and goals is paramount. Let us approach this change with the same spirit of collaboration, dedication, and passion that defines us," Richards added.


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