SAYING the Progressive Democratic Patriots (PDP) will not put square pegs in round holes, PDP deputy leader Farley Augustine on Monday dismissed claims that his political leader and candidate for Roxborough/ Argyle Watson Duke will be named Secretary of Finance if the party wins the December 6 THA election.
The PNM has campaigned heavily on Duke's management of the Public Services Association (PSA), arguing that a recent audit report and legal issues within the PSA prove that a PDP-led THA would be detrimental to Tobagonians.
At a meeting in the Scarborough/Mt Grace area on Monday, Augustine said he needed the address the issue.
“Mr Watson Solomon Duke, born and raised in Roxborough, Tobago, and vying to become the next representative or the continuing representative for Roxborough/ Argyle and who is also the president of the PSA, will not be the next Secretary of Finance in the Tobago House of Assembly. It can’t get clearer than that.”
He said Duke has also been on record declaring the same.
Augustine said even during the power-sharing negotiations between the PDP and PNM to resolve the six-six deadlock, Duke was not a contender for that post.
“When we were at the negotiations to come together and to form an executive together, Mr Duke made it very clear to all and sundry he has no interest in being any Secretary of Finance. But I needed to repeat it – a lot of people may have missed it earlier and are getting carried away by the fearmongering that is happening.
“I have addressed it clearly, cogently, comprehensively; Mr Duke addressed it earlier in this calendar year and so there is no need to panic anywhere.”
He said one thing about the PDP party, is that they do know their strengths and weaknesses.
“We know where our strengths and weaknesses lie in individuals and so we are not going to foster upon ourselves a situation where we put square pegs in round holes and round pegs in square holes. PDP is not that kind of party. We have had that for the last 21 years.”
Augustine said the PNM has a track record of being inefficient, which the PDP wants to change
"That's why brother Trevor (James) could tell you, over the last 21 years when you look at how much service lots they give out, it go take them over 200 years at that same work rate to give out the same 2,000 service lots they want to give you.
"Brother Watson (Duke) told us some weeks ago, on average they gave us 11 homes per year, when yuh divide 21 years by the number of houses they gave out. That work rate is laziness. That work rate is inefficient."