Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 10th 2015 Contents A16
Sunday Guardian www.guardian.co.tt May 10, 2015
UNC MPs---Where do they stand?
From Page A6
She said forms would be available from 8 am and
at the close of nominations the UNC secretariat would
ensure that all of the nominations received were
arranged by constituency and the screening process
would begin. This, she said, would of course require
the nominee to come for an interview and "a number
of factors will be taken into consideration."
The party chairman said nominations were open
for all 41 constituencies.
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar, she said,
would head the screening committee, which would
comprise a youth representative and a women s rep-
resentative "because our party has made it a policy
approach, a practice to ensure that our slates are bal-
anced in terms of gender and age, in addition to other
What is the party looking for in a candidate?
Asked exactly what the party was looking for in
a candidate, Ameen said, "There are a number of
categories that the candidates can fall into. There are
very organic candidates who can be very rooted in
the constituency. There are candidates who can have
a national profile and a community person, someone
who is very rooted in the community and may or
may not have a national profile. But certainly one of
the things that would be expected is the ability to
perform within a government."
Mindful of the partnership
She said as the party embarked on its election
preparations, it had to be mindful of its partnership
and the sharing of seats.
Ameen said in the case of seats allocated to another
party within the partnership, the selected nominee
to contest that seat would be expected to continue
to work with the party.
She could not say, at this point, how the seats
would be shared among the partners.
There are other issues with regards to the shape
of the government and so on that we want to take
into consideration, in addition to, of course, the most
critical part which is the representation of the people
within the constituency," she added.
The race is on for nominations in the UNC and
while some sitting MPs are yet to decide if they are
willing to face the electorate again, others have already
indicated that they have no intention to call it a day
Couva North MP Ramona Ramdial has expressed
a desire to offer herself for re-election. She said she
had solid support in her constituency.
Ramdial, via WhatsApp, said she would be filing
her nomination papers tomorrow (Monday).
She also added that she would not be going alone
to file her papers.
"I will be carrying a posse, tassa, fanfare, the works,"
For Chaguanas East MP Stephen Cadiz, contesting
his seat is a decision he would take if asked to return.
"When the screening of the UNC begins and it is
felt that I am deserving of going back up I will offer
myself. If there is another plan, well, I have absolutely
no problem with that. I think that we have done well,"
Cadiz, who received poor marks from his con-
stituents, admitted that there were always complaints
and "you can never, never satisfy all communities.
There is always going to be an issue."
He said like everywhere else there were issues of
resources and "obviously we do not get every single
thing that we want so there is a resource issue."
In fact he said, "You have to fight, even though I
am a member of the PP (People s Partner-
ship), you still have to go and lobby and
fight for your constituents. But all in all I
think Chaguanas East, at the end of the day,
is a better place than when we met it in
Dr Roodal Moonilal, leader of government
business and UNC deputy political leader,
confirmed his decision to seek re-election.
Moonilal, via text message to the Sunday
Guardian, said, "It is my intention to file
nomination papers for the constituency of
Oropouche East and seek the nomination
of our screening committee to offer myself
for a mandate from the people to be returned
as their member of parliament for a fifth
Fyzabad MP Chandresh Sharma reminded
the Sunday Guardian that he was the longest
serving member having been elected in 1991
and six times subsequently thereafter.
This, he said, was "simply because the
constituents are very supportive and I have
been working and I will make myself avail-
able." He said over the years some 50 nom-
inees would have applied for the seat and
he welcomed more nominees to apply as "it
is very healthy and encouraging when more
persons apply and hopefully the best person
Caroni East MP Dr Tim Gopeesingh said
he would definitely be seeking re-election.
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