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Monday 17 June 2019
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UNC sees Patriotric Front as ‘spoiler’ in elections

Mickela Panday, head of the newly formed Patriotic Front, at the political party's launch at Marie St, Chaguanas, on Saturday. PHOTO BY YVONNE WEBB
Mickela Panday, head of the newly formed Patriotic Front, at the political party's launch at Marie St, Chaguanas, on Saturday. PHOTO BY YVONNE WEBB

THE Opposition UNC is not threatened by the formation of Mickela Panday’s Patriotric Front (PF) party, nor does it believe it will erode its base.

Deputy political leader David Lee said one day after Panday's party was launched, “They are just spoilers in my view. They cannot win an election.

“The fight is between the two major parties, the PNM and the UNC.”

He said if the intention of the PF was to split votes which normally went to the UNC whenever an election was called, then it really was not putting people first as outlined in its party charter.

Lee said, since September 7, 2015 when the PNM wrested political power from the People’s Partnership, the country had been in an economic decline and people have been suffering.

“So, if anyone wants to come and split votes they don’t really care about governance and the suffering this country has been under. All should be focused on bringing back proper stability to this country, to bring back some economic stability which has been eroding daily under this government.

“Everyone is free to form a party. I heard the young Independent Senator Nikoli Edwards saying he, too, will launch a party. I guess its party central as they say. They are probably smelling something in the sense that election is in the air.”

Lee said he hope the parties that were popping up could afford to field candidates for all the districts in the Local Government elections and all 41 constituencies in the general elections.

“I hope they are not just targeting certain constituencies. We will just have to wait and see.”

At her Chaguanas party launch on Saturday, Mickela said decisions about contesting all seats had not yet been finalised.

She said, “our aim is to forge an organisation that would unite our peoples of diverse racial, ethnic, religious, and class identities into a force designed to commit our combined energies to forging the much-desired dream of building a society in which we can all live and prosper in peace, harmony and happiness.”

Former prime minister Basdeo Panday, who has given his daughter Mickela his blessings to forge ahead with her political career, said he would help, but only if asked to.

“I said to my daughter, I am available if she needs my advice, any time.”

He added, “We have combined the energy and enthusiasm of youth with age and experience.

“The youths don’t have the experience and the old people don’t have the energy.”

He said the PF as a party was more about changing the way things were done in TT.

“A party that looks at changing our culture. As Mickela said, lawlessness. We are a very lawless people. What we are trying to do is develop a nation and getting into power is part of that. It is not the end. We hope to unite people.”

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