Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 8th 2015 Contents A10
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Tuesday, December 8, 2015
OPEN ON SUNDAY
Voters braved inclement
weather yesterday as they made
their way to the Malabar Sec-
ondary School, Malabar, Arima,
to cast their ballots in the Local
The two candidates were
PNM s Merlyn Calliste and Dara
Mahindra Singh of the UNC bat-
tling for the Malabar South elec-
Voters came out as early as
5.30 am at the school at the cor-
ner of Urban Pescher and
There was a steady stream of
voters during the morning, most
eager to show their red-stained
In a brief interview outside the
polling station, Caliste said if
victorious she had a list of con-
cerns she would like to be
She said she would like to have
further meetings with the former
councillor for the area.
"Things went pretty well, it
was quite smooth and I was out
in just a few minutes. I have a
list of concerns that I gathered
while on the campaign trail and
I want to look at the area we
can implement as soon as pos-
sible. We will have dialogue with
the burgessess and look at their
concerns with the members of
council and Parliament.
"There are some projects that
need urgent attention that I
would like to focus on," she said.
Singh said he was aware that
district was a PNM stronghold.
"It was very slow but expect-
ing to pick up later on. We are
looking for a good turnout and
we not expecting a big turn out
more than 40 per cent," he said.
He said he did not believe in
losing a ballot or other circum-
lose and I don t believe problems
will show up in the turnout this
morning. So far so good. There
are only two candidates but it
is a PNM area," he said.
Meanwhile, outside the polling
station, Jacklyn Emmanuel
claimed she was the first to vote.
"I came early this morning. I
was the first to vote," she showed
her red-stained finger, "the rain
kept back people."
A few heavy showers in east
Trinidad resulted in a slow but
steady voter turnout during the
course of early yesterday morning
for the by-election for the cor-
poration seats of Auzonville
Checks at the various polling
stations in the Tunapuna area
revealed a general consensus of a
steady stream of voters who turned
out to exercise their franchise just
after 6 am yesterday.
This continued for about three
hours as the process slowed.
Some people complained of not
finding their names on the voters
list but in some instances they had
gone to the wrong polling stations.
One assistant presiding officer
at the Tunapuna Girls RC School,
Eastern Main Road, Tunapuna,
described the voting process as
slow, adding that the majority who
voted during the morning period
were either older or middle-aged
She said voting was also expect-
ed to pick up into the early
evening, just before polls closed
Local Government elections...
No major hiccups in voting
In instances of people s names not
being on the list she said provisions
would have been made to ensure people
At the Tunapuna Presbyterian School
at the corner of Payne and Cochrane
Streets, voting was described as gen-
erally steady. Many people were also
seen being dropped off to vote.
One ballot officer also said there
were no major complaints, adding that
the process was smooth.
"It seemed that some of those who
came in the morning period did so
before heading out to work," he said.
Checks at the Tunapuna Secondary
School at Taylor Street also showed a
steady turn out during the early morn-
"The rains earlier on may have played
a part in the very small number of vot-
ers coming out but the numbers did
increase as the morning progressed.
"Although the polls opened promptly
impediment," one presiding officer at
Hillview College at the corner of El
Dorado and College Roads said.
A recent poll conducted by the North
American Caribbean Teachers Associ-
ation (NACTA) over the last several
days said PNM candidate for Malabar
South, Merlyn Calliste, would easily
defeat Dara Singh of the UNC.
It was also predicted that the PNM s
Travis Williams of Auzonville would
also triumph over UNC s Lauren Kanhai
by a huge majority.
Calliste, a former chief executive offi-
cer of the Arima Borough Corporation
(ABC), had previously expressed con-
fidence of winning.
The two vacancies were the result
of the elevation by the two sitting coun-
cillors in last September s general elec-
tion as Members of Parliament, Antho-
ny Garcia of Malabar South, now
Education Minister and Esmond Forde
of Tunapuna who is now Deputy
Some 16,000 people are eligible to
vote in the by-elections.
Malabar South has an electorate of
4,725 persons, spread over six polling
divisions and eight polling stations.
Auzonville/Tunapuna comprises 19
polling divisions and has an electorate
of some 11,371 voters.
Malabar a PNM stronghold
PNM Malabar South candidate Merlyn Calliste, right, shows off her ink-stained finger after casting her
ballot at the Malabar Secondary School yesterday. PHOTO: ABRAHAM DIAZ
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