Jacquil Imagery and Urisha Blake interview Political Candidates St. Eustatius

Urisha blake (r) interviewing PLP Party Leaders Rechelline Leerdam. Image: Jacquile Imagery.

Oranjestad, St. Eustatius- Urisha Blake, assisted by Jacquil Pandt from Jacquil Imagery has held a total interviews with 3 women on the three political lists which will head to the polls tomorrow: the Democratic Party (DP), the United People Coalition (UPC) and Progressive Labour Party (PLP).

Blake said her initial ambition was to organize a debate, but also came to realize that due to Covid, a different format would be better. The interviews were taped over the course of last weekend. Blake said she could not have been happier about the quality of the recording done by by Pandt. “Something we are not always used to here on Statia”.

Blake wanted to know from each of the candidates, among others, why they decided to get active in the political arena and what they, as women were bringing to the table.

Raquel Spanner-Carty (DP) said she did not feel that she had chosen politics, but politics chose her. “I was approached by the party and then I started as a Board member”, said Spanner-Carty, who said she liked the social aspect of being involved in politics. Answering Blake’s question as to what she as a women brought to the table, Spanner-Carty said she felt women were very strong at multi-tasking. “We do it so well”, said Carty who spoke about having to work, talk to the boss, drive and pick up the kids.

Carmen Bonilla (UPC) spoke about her mixed background which made her able to reach out to people from different cultures. Bonilla also explained that in the UPC party all candidates were seen as equal and there was no gender discrimination. Bonilla said she was convinced that a women can do any task as good as any man, it was just a question of putting your mind to it.

Rechelline Leerdam (PLP) spoke about how women around the world had a bigger role in politics, the fact that women needed to balance many things and the fact that Statia always has had various leading women in local politics. Blake asked Leerdam if she wasn’t afraid that former Party Leader Clyde van Putten would overshadow her as new and younger political leader. Leerdam said she was definitely her own person with her own ideas and goals, and to take the leadership role was a conscious decision.


The interviews by Blake were informative and nicely done. They certainly give some additional insight to the various candidates, and what they and their parties stand for.

The interviews, which are really worth watching can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/Jacquil.Imagery/posts/2916195468667349

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