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 St. Kitts and Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP)

The Saint Kitts and Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP) is a centre-left political party in Saint Kitts and Nevis. It is currently the ruling party in the country.

The SKNLP has had several titles. Prior to the secession or Anguilla from its tripartite status with Saint Kitts and Nevis in the late 1970s, the party was formally called the Saint Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla.

The SKNLP was formally founded in 1940 as part of the Saint Kitts-Nevis Labour Union. Its roots, however, extend back to the incipient Saint Kitts Worker's League founded on 25 Janaury 1932 and the worker insurrection or 1935.  This makes the SKNLP the oldest party in the Commonwealth Caribbean.

In 1966, the Workers' LEague was formally renamed the St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla Labour Party (SKNALP)

The SKNALP was established as a vanguard party passionately committed to empower the masses of the country. It aims and objectives include:

  • To achieve and maintain political independence for the people of the State.
  • To promote the political, social and economic welfare of all of the people of the State.
  • To maintain a vigorous and conscious political vanguard for removing all forms of oppression and for the maintenance of a democratic government.
  • To work with and in the interest of the St Kitts-Nevis Trades and Labour Union and other kindred organizations, in joint political or other actions, in harmony with the Constitution and Standing Orders of the Party.
  • To co-operate with other democratic organizations in the Caribbean and elsewhere with a view to promoting the welfare of our country and the Caribbean.
  • To secure and maintain the complete unity of the people of the State in their struggle for political, social and economic advancement.

The party was led by Robert Bradshaw from 1946 until his death in May 1978. the only break in Premier Bradshaw's leadership of the Labour Party occurred when he left Saint Kitts and Nevis to serve as finance minister of the West Indies Federation during its brief tenure (1958-1962). Upon Bradshaw's death, Caleb Southwell assumed leadership or the SKNLP for the second time and became the second premier of the Associate State of Saint Kitts-Nevis. Lee Llewellyn Moore ad­vanced to leadership of the SKNLP a year later and assumed the role of premier upon the death or Southwell in May 1979, Moore's tenure as premier was also short-lived; in 1980, Labour lost its first election in 25 years, a span of six election periods.

The party saw most of its success on Saint Kitts, whilst Nevis and Anguilla tended to elect independents and local parties It was the only party to contest the 1952 elections and won all eight seats. They retained power in the 1957 despite losing three seats to independents. They went onto win elections in 1961, 1966, 1971 and 1975, winning seven seats on each occasion.

In the 1980 elections the party was reduced to four seats, and although it was the largest faction in the National Assembly, the opposition People's Action Movement was able to form a coalition government. The Labour Party was reduced to two seats in the 1984 elections, and remained with only two MPs after the 1989 elections. Dr. Denzil Douglas became party leader in 1989. Although it received the most votes in the 1993 elections and won the same number of seats as the PAM, the PAM remained in power. However, early elections were called in 1995, in which the Labour Party won a majority of seats, and Dr. Douglas become the country's second Prime Minister..

Labour increased their majority in the 2000 elections and retained power in elections in 2004 and 2010. In the 2015 general election, Labour was defeated by the Team Unity coalition of the People's Action Movement (PAM), People's Labour Party (PLP), and Concerned Citizens' Movement (CCM).

Leader Dr. Denzil L. DOUGLAS
Founded 25 January 1932
National Assembly seats - 2015 3/11
Party Colour Red
Party Symbol Star
Youth Arm St. Kitts Young Labour
First election 1957
Last election 2015
Status Active
Politcal Parties of St. Kitts and Nevis
St. Kitts and Nevis Elections
SKNLP 2015 Manifesto
SKNLP 2010 Manifesto
SKNLP 2004 Manifesto
Category 1971 1975 1980 1984 1989 1993 1995 2000 2004 2010
Candidates 8 9 9 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
Seats 7 7 4 2 2 4 7 8 7 6
Votes 8,063 7,363 7,355 7,878 6,635 8,405 10,722 11,762 11,427 12,227
% Valid Votes 50.65% 60.17% 50.01% 44.21% 37.84% 43.78% 49.58% 53.85% 50.61% 46.96%
Change 6.44% 9.52% -0.64% -15.95% -6.37% 5.94% 5.80% 4.27% -3.25% -3.64%
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