Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, acknowledging his re-election as Political Leader of the People’s National Movement (PNM) - as an unopposed candidate - said this was a reflection of PNMites confidence in his leadership, and called on supporters in Tobagonians to vote for his slate of candidates in the party’s national election on Sunday.
“I want to thank you very sincerely for the confidence you have placed in me. By not putting up another candidate, what you have said is that you are satisfied with my leadership, you are satisfied with the efforts that I have made since 2010, five years in Opposition and so far, three years as Government,” Rowley said as he addressed supporters at last Sunday’s third convention of the PNM’s Tobago Council at the conference room of the Division of Infrastructure at Shaw Park.
Rowley said he thought long and hard before making his nominations for his slate of candidates.
“On this occasion, I observed what was happening and I thought that it was important for me as your leader to take responsibility for ensuring that the Executive will be elected from people who had demonstrated an aptitude and the experience for doing certain things, the team work, and I used my experience to identify persons within the party who either would have done those jobs or who can do those jobs, but most importantly that after election day, you would have a strong and cohesive team to take your party forward.
“When I saw what was on the offering, I realise that as leader I had to ensure that I endorsed a slate for your consideration, because I didn’t want you to end up with an executive by accident,” he said.
Urging Tobago supporters to vote for members of his slate on Sunday, he said, “the route from Opposition to Government was not an easy one.” “There were some people that spent all their waking moments during that time, having no confidence apparently that the party could win an (general) election. But more so, having their own personal agendas and tabanca, and spent their time advocating that the PNM should not be supported in the 2015 general elections.
“Any person who goes out there, opposing the PNM in a general election for whatever reason as far as I am concerned, I will campaign against you if you come for office. So don’t do that when we down in the dumps in Opposition and then when we are in Government you come telling people, ‘I supporting the political leader.’
“Don’t support me, I know you very well and I will not sit idly by and watch you accidentally get elected to any position of executive in this party,” he said.
PNMites can vote at two polling stations in Tobago on Sunday – at the Calder Hall Community Centre and at the Scarborough Secondary school.