Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 4th 2014 Contents THE BOOTS HAVE IT
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Tuesday, February 4, 2014
Opposition leader Dr Keith Rowley
does not feel threatened by compe-
tition for the leadership of the Peo-
ple s National Movement (PNM).
Rowley s statement comes as vice-
chairman of the party Pennelope
Beckles-Robinson signalled on Sunday
that it was time for a change in the
party s leadership.
The party announced last month
the date for internal elections would
be May 18.
Asked whether he would be looking
forward to competition, he said: "I
always love competition."
Rowley was speaking to reporters
yesterday during a coffee break at the
2014 Energy Conference at the Hyatt
Regency Trinidad, Port-of-Spain.
Commenting on whether the inter-
nal elections would result in fractures
in the party, he said:
"The party will survive any election.
We have thousands of members. What
an election is, is an invitation to par-
ticipate. It s a selection process. It s
not going to be harmful, it s going to
Referring to the December oil spills
which devastated several beaches and
mangrove area in the southwestern
peninsula, Rowley said the party was
insisting that there must be a "proper
"Petrotrin cannot be allowed to
investigate itself and hide the facts of
what went on there and its conduct
in giving us information that is not
the whole story."
Rowley maintained that Energy
Minister Kevin Ramnarine "grossly
mis-handled" the spills.
As members of the People s National Movement
move to elect a new executive on May 18, candidates
are being told to keep the campaign clean.
This is according to the election code of conduct
and regulations, which were approved during a
marathon five-hour special general council meeting
The code says those contesting the election "should
at no time focus on the personalities of other can-
didates, their families or members of their campaign
team of other candidates."
The code also stipulates that candidates:
• Shall not direct or promote vicious attacks or
innuendoes on other candidates or their family mem-
• Shall not incite hostilities or violence.
• Shall not use language that is disparaging, dis-
tasteful, abusive, indecent or inflammatory.
• Should act with a sense of responsibility and
display conduct that is befitting of an aspirant to
office in the movement
General secretary of the PNM Ashton Ford said
yesterday candidates would be allowed to publish
media advertisements but they should not be "exces-
sive." Ford told the T&T Guardian the candidates
should conduct inexpensive campaigns in humility.
The report was presented by former attorney general
and chairman of the party s standing orders and rules
committee, Brigid Annisette-George.
Ford said the elections would be conducted by a
21-member elections supervisory committee, chaired
by Charles Mitchell, with former Port-of-Spain mayor
Murchison Brown as deputy chairman. Nomination
Day is March 14.
The election will be historic as it will be the first
time it is being held under the system of one-man-
one-vote. All previous elections in the 58-year-old
party took place using a delegate system.
Ford said permission has already been granted for
polling to take place at various schools.
A pressure group within the PNM, called To Pre-
serve the Balisier (TPTB), led by Dr Bose Sharma,
is leading a campaign against the party s leader Dr
Keith Rowley, saying members of East Indian descent
were leaving because of his leadership.
Sharma said the TPTB would name its candidate
to challenge Rowley for the leadership of the party
soon. Its campaign was launched in Pinto Road,
Arima, last month.
Former assistant secretary and member for 42
years Deodath Ojah-Maharaj has dismissed that
claim, saying he had never experienced discrimination
in the PNM.
Rowley was a "no-nonsense leader and a proactive
man who is committed to delivery," he added, also
describing him as "non-corruptible and a man of
PNM candidates advised:
Keep the election
Rowley: Bring on
Catch Me during The
LIFE, the all-inclusive
party at Kenson
Dr Keith Rowley
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