POLITICAL leader of the Congress of the People (COP) Carolyn Seepersad Bachan blasted former chairman Joseph Toney blaming him for the decline of the party which, he said, drove him to the folds of the United National Congress (UNC). Toney appeared on a UNC Monday Night Forum platform in El Dorado last week, where he chastised his former party saying it no longer has relevance or appeal to win an election. He said the COP had lost its way.
Seepersad-Bachan lashed back saying decisions Toney took in the past as an executive member is partly responsible for the decline of the COP and the departure of foundation member Winston Dookeran.
“You came in at a time when the party was in government, you chaired the party and now that the party has suffered and it went into decline because of some of the decision you took in those days, when you as chairman supported Mr Ramadhar (former political leader Prakash Ramadhar) in a lot of things members were very unhappy with, and to come now and say the COP has lost its relevance. The mere fact that Mr Toney has to go to another party and stand on a public platform and say that, tells you how relevant the COP is.”
She told Newsday there are those who want the COP to become irrelevant and are carrying this perception into the public domain. “If that was true they would not spend so much time and effort trying to create this perception that we are so irrelevant.” Seepersad-Bachan admitted that the COP is as its lowest ebb. “It has gone into a state of dysfunctionality over the last couple of years. As political leader, I am trying to rebuild the party to ensure all the organs and arms, institutions of the party begin to function again, including constituency executives.
She said instead of staying and building the party which he served as chairman, Toney resigned several weeks ago and ran to the UNC because he feels the COP has no value and can no longer benefit him.
Seepersad-Bachan said Toney, who has been appointed the UNC’s co-ordinator for Toco/Sangre Grande, has been an inactive member since he lost the chairmanship to her in 2012 and even though she offered an olive branch, he refused to serve.
She said Toney’s only interest is self, above party or country. “I think he is trying to create a false impression he was this big active member but since 2012, Mr Toney has played a very inactive role in the COP.”