RESIDENTS of Point Fortin – which many refer to as a “PNM stronghold” – are confident in mayor and the party’s new candidate for the borough Kennedy Richards Jr.
Along with a small group of supporters, Techier/Guapo councillor Lyndon Harris and outgoing MP Edmund Dillon, Richards staged a walkabout in the villages of Cochrane and Gonzales in the Guapo area.
They were mostly greeted with smiles by residents and vehicles on the road honked their horns as they drove past to show support.
Others lamented, explaining some of the issues they've had and challenges they had been facing. Those included the condition of the roads, unemployment, proper drainage, among other things.
Richards told Newsday he is very confident heading into this election season, adding that he’s glad it is a “short season.
“It will be quick like a sprint,” he said.
He said this was the party’s tenth walkabout in the borough thus far as he already visited areas such as Cap-de-Ville, the business community in the heart of Point Fortin, and the first half of Cochrane.
Asked if he feels he would be better able to serve the public as MP as opposed to mayor, he said, “Well, it’s two different things. Local government and central government provide different opportunities. But I see it as an opportunity to assist the wider Point Fortin and the wider community – all the way from Icacos to Cochrane, even persons from Buenos Aires. It would give me an opportunity to do more and implement policies that will affect people’s lives down the line.”
When it was first announced that Dillon would no longer be the candidate for Point Fortin, many were disappointed, saying they would have preferred Richards remain as mayor.
Asked about this, Richards said, “That door has been closed. The MP himself has reached out to me and he will be on the walk with us this afternoon. It’s one family. The PNM is a democratic party and the process has run its course and we are now one force going forward to secure victory in this general election (on August 10).”
He said the complaint he has received the most has been about the roadways, which he said should be sorted out “in short order.”
Dillon told Newsday he is in “full support” of Richards.
“This is not about individuals, this is about the PNM party, and I am here to support Kennedy.”