Timothy Harris

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Timothy Harris
TimothyHarris.jpg
3rd Prime Minister of Saint Kitts and Nevis
Assumed office
18 February 2015
MonarchElizabeth II
Governor GeneralEdmund Lawrence
Samuel Weymouth Tapley
Seaton
Preceded byDenzil Douglas
Personal details
Born (1964-12-06) 6 December 1964 (age 54)
Tabernacle, Saint Christopher-Nevis-Anguilla
Political partyLabour Party (Before 2013)
People's Labour Party
(2013–present)
Other political
affiliations
Team Unity (2013–present)
Alma materUniversity of the West
Indies

McGill University

Timothy Sylvester Harris (born 6 December 1964) is the current Prime Minister of Saint Kitts and Nevis, in office since 2015. He previously served as Minister of Foreign Affairs from 10 August 2001 to 25 January 2008, as Minister for Finance from 2008 to 2010, and as Senior Minister and Minister for Agriculture from 2010 to 2013.[1]

Life and career[edit]

Harris was born, in 1964, and grew up in the rural village of Tabernacle, Saint Kitts. He attended the Cayon High School and Basseterre High School before going to six university campuses, two in the Caribbean and four in Canada. In 1988, Harris graduated from the Cave Hill Campus of the University of the West Indies with a B.Sc. degree with a First Class Honours in Accounting, the only graduate of the B.Sc. Accounting programme to obtain this distinction. He also received the Victor Crooke Prize for Best Accounting Student. He returned home and worked for two years at managerial level with S. L. Horsfords and Co Ltd.

In 1990–92 he pursued his M.Sc. degree in Accounting at the St. Augustine Campus of UWI in Trinidad and Tobago. He graduated top of the class with an M.Sc. degree with a Distinction in Accounting.[citation needed]

In 2001 Harris successfully defended his Ph.D. dissertation at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. The doctoral programme is a joint Ph.D. programme involving Concordia University, McGill and two francophone universities: H.E.C. and UQAM. Harris holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Administration majoring in Accounting.[citation needed]

Harris participated in elective politics in 1993 and was elected as a Member of Parliament on the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party ticket in parliamentary elections held in 1995, 2000, 2004, and 2010. He held various cabinet posts, including Minister of Agriculture, Lands and Housing, Minister of Education, Labour and Social Security, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Education and Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Trade, Industry and Commerce. He has published several works and received several awards, including the St. Kitts Youth Council Award for Excellence in Education, the FESTAB Community Award for outstanding contribution to FESTAB and a certificate for outstanding contribution to the Cayon High School.

In 2013 Prime Minister Denzil Douglas fired Harris from the cabinet.[2] Harris established the People's Labour Party (PLP) later in the year. In the buildup to the 2015 general elections the PLP formed the Team Unity alliance with the People's Action Movement and the Concerned Citizens' Movement. The alliance won the elections, and although the PLP won only one seat, Harris became the third Prime Minister of independent St. Kitts and Nevis on 16 February. He succeeded the incumbent, Denzil Douglas, who served a historic near 20-year tenure.

Political controversies[edit]

Timothy Harris and the administration led by him were involved in a series of political controversies.

PetroCaribe controversy[edit]

In 2015 the Timothy Harris-led administration received funds from the Venezuelan government amounting to 16 million dollars.[3] Ambiguities remain, whether the actual sum received by the Venezuelan government amounted to 16 million USD, which would amount to approximately 43.2 million East Caribbean dollars.[4]

Stem cell scandal[edit]

In 2015 the Timothy Harris-led government was planning on establishing a stem cell research and treatment facility in St. Kitts and Nevis.[5] It was later revealed that the government has authorized regenerative medicine and stem cell activity at the JNF Public Hospital, which was not sanctioned on any legal grounds.[6]

Herpes scandal[edit]

Herpes vaccine trials have been taking place in St. Kitts and Nevis under the watch of the Timothy Harris government. In 2016 The SIU professor William Halford injected individuals in St. Kitts with an experimental herpes vaccine without any safety oversight.[7] This led to US Senator Chuck Grassley calling on the Trump administration for corrective action regarding the matter.[8][9]

Peter Virdee scandal[edit]

In a phone call between billionaire Peter Virdee, who was being accused of bribing high-ranking members of government in the Caribbean, and his business partner Dieter Trutschler, Virdee claims that Timothy Harris demanded a watch and a pair of shoes.[10] The call was intercepted by German law enforcement and excerpts of the recording were submitted in a High Court judgement in the United Kingdom.[10][11]

Citizenship By Investment scandal[edit]

In the Human Rights Report on St. Kitts from 2018 the US Department of State reported concerns regarding the Citizenship By Investment programme under the Timothy Harris-led administration.[12] At the Immigration Investment Summit in Dubai in February 2019, Sam Byatt, head of citizenship consultants Bayat Legal stated that applications under the Hurricane Relief fund have been switched to real estate, which means that financially, the people of St. Kitts and Nevis were getting "the short end of the stick".[13]

Honors[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Welcome cuopm.com - BlueHost.com". www.cuopm.com. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  2. ^ Office of the Prime Minister - Harris dismissed by Prime Minister
  3. ^ "Jamaica Observer Limited". Jamaica Observer. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  4. ^ says, John Browne. "THE PROOF IS IN: HARRIS STOLE MONEY FROM SUGAR WORKERS". sknwebnews.com. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  5. ^ "Stem cell research and treatment facility to be established in St Kitts — Caribbean Community (CARICOM)". caricom.org. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  6. ^ "Freedom FM – 106.5 - Media Statement by Dr. Patrick Martin". freedomskn.com. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  7. ^ https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/participants-in-rogue-herpes-vaccine-research-take-legal-action/2018/03/13/70a949aa-26ff-11e8-a227-fd2b009466bc_story.html
  8. ^ https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/grassley-calls-for-corrective-action-on-abuses-in-herpes-vaccine-research/2018/01/05/634ba1ee-f244-11e7-95e3-eff284e71c8d_story.html
  9. ^ Anson, Ben (16 January 2018). "Unethical herpes vaccine trial in St Kitts reaches US Senate". Caribbean News Now. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  10. ^ a b "What was said about St Kitts in the Peter Virdee taped conversations". Real News St Kitts and Nevis. 29 May 2018. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  11. ^ Hill, Sam (14 May 2018). "St Kitts and Nevis: PM responds to High Court links". wicnews.com. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
  12. ^ United States Department of State
  13. ^ https://www.caribbeannewsnow.com/2019/03/27/scandal-continues-to-grip-st-kitts-nevis-citizenship-by-investment-programme/
  14. ^ Wen, Yu-chen; Chung, Kuei-hsiang (16 April 2019). "President Tsai decorates St. Christopher and Nevis prime minister". Central News Agency. Retrieved 16 April 2019.
  15. ^ Su, Yung-yao; Chung, Jake (16 April 2019). "Saint Kitts prime minister in Taipei to improve ties". Taipei Times. Retrieved 16 April 2019.

External links[edit]

  • St. Kitts & Nevis - Government of St. Kitts and Nevis official website
  • United Nations - Permanent Mission of St. Kitts and Nevis to the United Nations Statement by His Excellency Dr. Timothy Harris
Political offices
Preceded by
Denzil Douglas
Prime Minister of Saint Kitts and Nevis
2015–present
Incumbent