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Stephenson King


Incumbent
Assumed office 
1 May 2007
Acting until 9 September 2007
Monarch Elizabeth II
Governor General Pearlette Louisy
Preceded by John Compton
Constituency Castries North

Born November 13, 1958 (1958-11-13) (age 51)
Castries, Saint Lucia
Political party United Worker's Party
Spouse(s) Rosella Nestor
Religion Roman Catholic

Stephenson King (born November 13, 1958 in Castries, Saint Lucia[1]) is a Saint Lucian politician who is currently the country's Prime Minister. He represents the constituency of Castries North for the United Workers Party (UWP) in the House of Assembly of Saint Lucia.[2] He won the elections in 2006 polling 2934 and unseating the incumbent Minister of Agriculture, Ignatius Jean, who polled 2047 votes.

King entered active politics in 1987 after leading the youth arm of the United Workers Party and then as President of the Caribbean Federation of Youth, a US funded organisation set up with assistance from Washington as a counterweight to lingering Marxist views even after the fall of the revolutionary government in Grenada. King served in government, under Prime Ministers John Compton and then Vaughan Lewis, between 1987 and 1997 first as Minister of Community Development and Sport and then as Minister of Health and Local Government.[3]

When the UWP was in the throes of its leadership contest between its two former leaders, Vaughan Lewis and Sir John Compton, King, the party's Chairman, was seen as Lewis' last big supporter in the party. However he did not follow Lewis into the St Lucia Labour Party on Lewis' loss of the party leadership and quipped on a political platform that , " I don't follow foolishness".

When the UWP won a majority of seats in this election, and a new government under Compton was sworn in on 19 December 2006, King became Minister for Health and Labour Relations.[4] After Compton fell ill in May 2007, King became Acting Prime Minister. In a cabinet reshuffle in early June 2007, he became Minister of Finance (including International Financial Services), External Affairs, Home Affairs, National Security, Labor, Information and Broadcasting.[5] It was an ironic twist that King would assume the mantle when the Deputy of the party was overlooked as just a few months before King had been seen as a Lewis loyalist in the party's leadership race.

Compton died on September 7, and King announced his death on September 8.[6]

King was subsequently sworn in as Prime Minister by Governor-General Pearlette Louisy on September 9.[7][8] All ten of the UWP's members of the House of Assembly agreed on King's designation as Prime Minister.[8] King reshuffled the cabinet on September 12; in addition to being Prime Minister, he is Minister of Finance, International Financial Services, External Affairs, Home Affairs and National Security.[9]

References

  1. ^ http://www.thecommonwealth.org/YearbookInternal/172051/head_of_government/ Biography on Commonwealth.org
  2. ^ List of members of the House of Assembly.
  3. ^ "May 1992 - New Cabinet", Keesing's Record of World Events, Volume 38, May, 1992 St Lucia, Page 38905.
  4. ^ Anselma Aimable, "St Lucia swears in new government ministers", Caribbean Net News, December 20, 2006.
  5. ^ "Reallocation of ministeral portfolios in St Lucia cabinet", Caribbean Net News, June 9, 2007.
  6. ^ "Address to the Nation By Acting Prime Minister Honourable Stephenson King on The Passing of Sir John Compton September 8, 2007", Saint Lucian government website.
  7. ^ "Stephenson King is St. Lucia’s new Prime Minister", Radio Jamaica, September 10, 2007.
  8. ^ a b "KING AT THE HELM", nationnews.com, September 10, 2007.
  9. ^ "St Lucia swears in new cabinet ministers", Caribbean Net News, September 13, 2007.

Earlier in 2008 Prime Minister King came under tremendous pressure first from the opposition leader Dr. Kenny Anthony, then from his own renegade government side parliamentarians, to fire Econimic Planning Minister Hon. Ausbert D'Auvergne. He subsequently acquiesed and returned Hon Rufus Bousquet, Choiseul MP to his cabinet. This defused the impasse.

King married Rosella Nestor, his long time partner in a wedding ceremony in Miami on Saturday the 29th of November ,2008.

King's most recent election poster.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
John Compton
Prime Minister of Saint Lucia
2007 – present
Succeeded by
Incumbent
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