Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : September 6th 2015 Contents A17
September 6, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
This was the number jamming the respec-
tive venues of yesterday s PP and PNM final
election rallies in Aranguez and Tacarigua.
And yesterday s sea of yellow light covering
the PP s Aranguez venue and the tide of bright
red at the PNM s Tacarigua location have
made tomorrow s election result seem def-
initely too close to call.
As in 2010, the Priority Bus Route was the
first leg of the general election battleground
yesterday as supporters of the PP and PNM
headed to their respective rallies at Aranguez
and Tacarigua along the PBR. All along the
PBR throughout the afternoon, vehicles flying
red PNM flags and others bearing yellow PP
emblems crossed each other.
It was a commuter s nightmare not just for
those wearing red heading East to the PNM
rally or those sporting yellow travelling to the
Aranguez rally, but also the hundreds of others
standing along the PBR who didn t wear party
colours and were trying to obtain transport
to get to their respective destinations.
PNMites started heading to Eddie Hart
Grounds from 11 am. Convoys of cars, maxi
taxis, music trucks, and vans packed the PBR
all day, with red-clad PNMites waving flags
out of vehicle windows. A music truck belong-
ing to PNM St Joseph candidate Terrence
Deyalsingh blared a PNM "redo" of the PP s
"Ain t No Stoppin Us Now" ode to Prime
Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar, featuring
reconfigured lyrics that praised PNM leader
Keith Rowley. From 1.30 pm, crowds clustered
around the PNM s stage, stretching out in all
directions, braving the scorching sun, a very
strong showing for the Opposition whose
stock increased from mid-term.
Unlike previous rallies, under the Manning
administration whose stage faced north, Rowley s PNM
turned the stage around, southwards. PNMites of all
ages---though mainly the PNM s traditional base---
swayed to the wave of anti-PP tunes by various artistes
including Devon Seales Go Nah... Anti-PP special
effects included a coffin with burning candles and a
placard effigy of the prime minister.
In a special box, PNM officials and high-level backers,
including Richard Young---father of PoS North candidate
Stuart Young---surveyed the crowd. Candidate Young
wore an unfailingly very broad grin and accepted many
handshakes of congratulations. Also in a high mood
were Howard Chin Lee and several West Trinidad busi-
The mood was marred briefly when flames were
seen on stage, flying into part of the crowd. A youth
was hauled onstage. His red PNM jersey was pulled up
revealing a yellow UNC jersey beneath. The MC said
the PNM "didn t know how much they (UNC) paid"
the youth to do that. He was taken away.
PNMites continued flowing in as Rowley was still
speaking at 7 pm.
Further West, down the PBR, traffic was backed up
all afternoon in the direction of the PP s Aranguez
venue. Maxi taxis, vans, cars and music trucks bearing
UNC and COP flags and blaring PP campaign anthems
sped down the PBR. PTSC buses also ferried loads of
supporters to the venue.
Around 1.30 pm, some supporters opted to shun the
gruelling sun by seeking the shade of tents. But as
crowds grew, the UNC s yellow began covering the
grounds. Supporters covered the grounds east to west
with yellow, with the occasional white of the COP
standing out, making it an impressively strong showing
for the PP whose 2010 victory---from the same Aranguez
point---was marred by a turbulent term. Attendees
included PP traditional support as well as some other
groups indicating the coalition has support outside of
the UNC s base. Apart from flags and banners, the PP s
attendees didn t utilise any effigies or coffins attacking
Cheering crowds were regaled by a variety of enter-
tainers with replies to the PNM s musical "lashes"
including "We Bringing Back Kamla." PP ministers and
coalition officials watched proceedings from a tent off
to one side, some expressing satisfaction at the turnout.
People were still streaming into the venue after 5 pm
and cheering crowds were on hand to hear PP leader
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar conclude her
address at 7.30 pm.
What s left now: to translate yesterday s thousands
for each side into votes tomorrow.
Thousands rally in red and yellow
This PNM supporter displays his makeshift
mannequin of Kamla Persad-Bissessar at the PNM's
rally yesterday, at the Eddie Hart Grounds, Tacarigua.
PHOTO: MICHEAL BRUCE
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