Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : October 20th 2013 Contents A5
October 20, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar
welcomed "back home" the crowd of yellow-
clad supporters packed into the People s Part-
nership final rally at Mid Centre Mall last
Speaking at the last leg of the coalition cam-
paign for tomorrow s local government elec-
tions, Persad-Bissessar called for united sup-
port for the People s Partnership.
"A house divided among itself will never
stand," she said.
She said four times in the past, the party
allowed the votes to be split and the People s
National Movement benefitted.
While interim political leader of the Inde-
pendent Liberal Party Jack Warner campaigned
on representation, Persad-Bissessar asked what
he was able to do in the Chaguanas West area
after the July by-election.
She said the coalition would be holding MPs
responsible for their areas. She called on the
crowd to use the social media to let her know
where they failed and they would be held
"I am telling the MPs to connect, connect,
connect with the people," she said.
Speakers before, including Labour Minister
Errol McLeod, Housing Minister Dr Roodal
Moonilal, Congress of the People leader
Prakash Ramadhar and coalition new-comer
and St Joseph hopeful television personality
Ian Alleyne, repeated the refrain heard
throughout the campaign trail "don t split the
Alleyne changed the popular People s
National Movement refrain to "great is the
UNC" and chanted it to the crowd.
The thick and horn-happy crowd grew as
Persad-Bissessar took to the stage.
"We are on the eve of a threshold," she told
"Once more you the people of our nation
are being given the chance to write the history
of the future of our nation," she said.
She said all the flags and jubilant support
meant nothing unless it is translated to votes.
She told the crowd a short story of her past,
leaving Trinidad for London at 16 to pursue
"And today, I am proud to stand before you
today as your Prime Minister," she said.
Persad-Bissessar paid homage to United
National Congress founder Basdeo Panday,
who she said founded the party 25 years ago.
"Thank you Mr Panday, thank you founder,"
She also thanked her parents for their sup-
port and called on the youths in the crowd to
"honour" their parents.
She said six years, 12 days ago she "bared"
her heart to the supporters and it was there
that she was urged to continue the struggle.
Persad-Bissessar said she started politics as
an alderman in local government and thanked
the crowd for standing with her when she
became the Member of Parliament for Siparia.
She said as first female Attorney General,
first female leader of the Opposition and first
female Prime Minister, the people also sup-
ported her and held her hand
CHARLES KONG SOO
The curtain came down on the
local government elections yes-
terday, bringing an end to weeks
of mudslinging, pre-action pro-
tocol letters and millions of dol-
lars spent on campaigning.
It was the first time citizens saw
such blow-by-blow character
assassination on display among
most of the main contending par-
ties: the Independent Liberal Party
(ILP), the Peoples National Move-
ment (PNM) and the People s Part-
It was also the first time so much
of the campaign was televised live,
like instalments in a soap opera or
reality show, complete with calyp-
soes, dramatic revelations, appar-
ently leaked police evidence, and
even the use of animal props---a
goat in a yellow T-shirt trotted on
the ILP platform yesterday.
One higher point of the election
season saw senior party represen-
tatives of the ILP, UNC, PNM and
MSJ participating in a debate on
the role of local government, which
piqued the interest of the popu-
lation. Unfortunately, few of the
ideas raised at the debate found
their way onto the public platforms
as topics of sustained discussion
A disappointment came with
the cancellation of the second
debate, which was to be among
party leaders. There was an
impasse between the Debates
Commission and the People s Part-
nership over Prime Minister Kamls
Persad-Bissessar s decision that
the Partnership would be repre-
sented by Prakash Ramadhar, polit-
ical leader of the Congress of the
Jack Warner pulled out of the
debate because Persad-Bissessar
was not participating. PNM polit-
ical leader Dr Keith Rowley said
he would have participated only if
Persad-Bissessar s absence was
"duly noted" and Warner was also
present. Movement for Social Jus-
tice (MSJ) political leader David
Abdulah said he would have hon-
oured his commitment to debate.
He expressed disappointment in
the action of the party leaders.
A poll by the North American
Teacher s Association has predicted
that votes tomorrow would be split,
giving the PNM the edge.
The elections tomorrow will
determine who will govern the 14
municipalities for the next three
years. ---with reporting by Shereen
Ali Shaliza Hassanali
• From Page A1
Ramlogan has faced criticisms
from the ILP, former attorney gen-
erals Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj and
John Jeremie, and former president
of the Law Association, Martin Daly,
SC for his decision to mount a polit-
ical platform in the run up to the
local elections to score "political
points." Ramlogan brandished police
documents in relation to Deonarine s
alleged purchase of a Range Rover
and also with respect to the sale of
land to Clico for $13 million by her
On the PNM platform in
Tacarigua, meanwhile, fiery calyp-
sonian Weston "Cro Cro" Rawlins
also attacked Ramlogan and govern-
Rawlins made reference to a goat,
calling Ramlogan s name, while he
named several ministers as being
In his song, Rawlins also called on
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bisses-
sar to call the election fast, sending
PNM supporters in a frenzy.
"The ship perishing slow... Kamla
no! no! call the election, you got to
go," he sang to the delight of sup-
porters, who waved their flags and
Rawlins said he was sure that
everyone would agree with him.
So loved was his lyrics, that PNM s
St Joseph by-election candidate Ter-
rence Deyalsingh had to call on Rawl-
ins for an encore.
Rawlins said the Government from
day one was filled with lies.
"Nepostism and corruption bla-
tantly. They just fixing themself,
Reshmi, Gopauls and their family,"
Even Rawlins colleague Michael
Osuna aka Sugar Aloes was accused
of "jumping ship," as he referred to
Osuna s performances on the UNC
stage for the January 2013 THA elec-
Aloes was known for singing on
the PNM platform.
Ramlogan: I won't stoop to their level
Ramlogan said last night that
in some religions and philoso-
phies, animal characters were
used to describe and depict
people s personalities.
"I can think of a number of
animal characters that come
to mind to respond to Jack
Warner and Keith Rowley.
However, I don t intend to
stoop to their level and will
stick to the facts. From now, I
will stick to Sponge Bob,
Patrick and Dora the Explor-
PM calls supporters back home...
Divided we fall
PP supporters wave flags and blow horns during the PP rally
yesterday held at Mid Centre Mall. PHOTO : RISHI RAGOONATH
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