Political ole talk.
This was how Chief Secretary Kelvin Charles described allegations by the Progressive Democratic Patriots (PDP) that the PNM-led Tobago House of Assembly (THA) was threatening to fire CEPEP and URP workers who do not plan to vote for the party in next year's general election.
Duke and minority councillor Faith BYisrael made the allegation on Wednesday during a PDP news conference at the party's uptown Scarborough headquarters. They claimed CEPEP and URP workers were being victimised.
But speaking to reporters at the Mt Irvine Bay Resort later that day, after a THA post-budget retreat for assemblymen and administrators, Charles categorically denied the allegation.
"We have done no such thing. We will do no such thing," he said.
In fact, Charles said since his administration assumed office, one of its priorities was to maintain employment levels, and the party has succeeded in doing so despite significantly reduced funding.
"If we were an administration focused on that kind of discrimination, there would have been ample justification, given the financial arrangements, to restructure. But the restructuring we did was for the betterment of everybody on the island."
For example, he said the URP would have been rebranded "and they are now engaged in very productive activities that I am sure all of Tobago are proud."
Asked if it is possible CEPEP and URP appointees from within the party could be using intimidation tactics of their own, Charles responded: "What is possible is that these political jokers are looking to make a name for themselves and they would use any ruse to create fear among the population. That is what is possible."