Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 19th 2014 Contents GAIL ALEXANDER
Rowley s re-elected!
That s the obvious outcome following last
night s PNM s internal elections results
showing incumbent political leader Keith
Rowley sailing to victory over challenger
Results started coming into Balisier House
elections commission from 9.33 pm with
Rowley leading all the way.
At 10.36 pm PNM elections commission
vice chairman Murchison Browne said Row-
ley was leading in 11 constituencies and had
95 per cent of the votes cast.
Browne said up to that time Rowley had
a total of 3,505 votes to Beckles-Robinson s
Speaking at 9.55 pm, Rowley, wearing his
signature white captain s hat, had also said
he was very optimistic.
Rowley said the election had given lie to
statements that people were not interested
in the exercise and the election had the look
and feel of a general election. He said for
a party operating with volunteers, it was
"quite a logistical experience."
Rowley congratulated all fellow party
members "especially those who were can-
didates and offered themselves" for the
Team Rowley was so confident of a vic-
tory that supporters started gathering at
PNM s Balisier House headquarters from 7
pm, and a stage, DJ and platform were also
set up for a celebration from early in the
night. It began before Rowley arrived with
jubilation breaking out as the numbers in
favour of Rowley started rolling in. Among
those present were MP Paula Gopee -Scoon
and members of the incumbent team.
At Beckles-Robinson s headquarters in
Valsayn, however, it was a different mood.
Beckles-Robinson had not arrived up to 10
pm. She was said to be arriving at the office
around 11 pm.
Team Penny supporter Laventille West
MP Nileung Hypolite asked at 10.34 pm if
the team would concede said, " I prefer to
wait until the last vote is counter before any
such statement. There are 41 constituen-
"I m very proud of her and each member
of her team. She took it on herself and went
forward to contest the position,"
Asked if he would support another leader,
Hypolite said he is a PNM member and
whoever the leader is he would support.
PNM s Faris Al Rawi, who basically
declared a victory for Rowley, lauded Beck-
les- Robinson s courage to have stepped
foward. He said Beckles-Robinson and her
team should be thanked as everyone had
taken the PNM to a new stage . He acknowl-
edged there were internal issues but added
it was a "tremendous experience."
Al Rawi said PNM is now on to general
Results for the post of political leader
were the first to be finalised after voting
closed at 6 pm.
The result for the post of political leader
which some quarters had easily predicted,was
the end of a three month campaign with
accusations flying on all sides.
PNM election commission Charles
Mitchell said votes for the other 14 executive
posts were being done after that, and final
results for all of these were expected by 1
am or 2 am today.
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Relected leader of the PNM Dr Keith Rowley
arrived at Balisier House, Port-of-Spain, last night
wearing a red PNM T-shirt with the words Keep
Calm and Vote PNM and his sailor hat.
In a brief interview with reporters, Rowley said he
chose to wear the hat because: "I am the captain of
this (PNM) ship."
This caused the small crowd assembled to scream
Rowley said based on the trend of votes tallied he
was expected to be confirmed as leader of the 58-
year-old party in its historic one-man-one-vote
Rowley said there were some hiccups during the
election as it was the first time the election was con-
ducted under the new system.
He said the process was slow initially but the Elec-
tions Supervisory Committee intervened and cleared
up the bottlenecks resulting in a subsequent smooth
flow of the process.
He said based on the preliminary results "it appears
as though party members would have voted wisely."
He said he remained very optimistic of a resounding
election victory and the results showed the party was
He said yesterday s vote gives a lie to the claim that
people were not interested in the process. "today s
election has the look and feel of a general election,"
he said in congratulating his supporters.
In response to questions on healing within the party,
Rowley said that was "only required when there are
wounds and sores. The PNM does not carry wounds
and sores, we now walk with a spring in our step and
we look forward to the days ahead."
He said effective today the party will be addressing
general election issues.
Asked if he would be working with his challenger,
Pennelope Beckles-Robinson, Rowley quickly respond-
ed: "I will be working with every party member in
the PNM I expect to be leader of the PNM and we
don t have two categories of members."
Minutes after Rowley s comments ambassador to
the UN Rodney Charles, who is expected to manage
the UNC general election campaign next year con-
gratulated him on his victory.
"While we congratulate Dr Rowley on winning the
internal elections, we also hasten to add that he now
has a duty to actually lead, rather than simply attack
for the sake of attacking," Charles said in a prepared
Monday, May 19, 2014 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
The first set of results
• Barataria- San Juan - Rowley (336),
Beckles- Robinson (53)
• Caroni East - Rowley (119), Beckles -
•Chaguanas West - Rowley (109),
Beckles- Robinson (2)
•Diego Martin West - Rowley (803),
•Moruga - Tableland - Rowley (426),
Beckles- Robinson (14)
•Princes Town - Rowley (255), Beckles-
•Naparima - Rowley (61), Beckles-
•Lopinot /Bon Air - Rowley (456),
•San Fernando West - Rowley (509),
Beckles - Robinson (72).
•St Joseph - Rowley (554), Beckles-
for 16th MAY, 2014
On to general election
Rowley: I'm captain
of the PNM ship
PNM leader Dr Keith Rowley raises his hand in victory at Balisier House last night. PHOTO:
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