Tuesday 7 April, 2020

Run-off in Tobago PNM election set for this weekend

A screengrab from a conference held by the Tobago Council of the PNM on Tuesday, via Tobago Channel 5.

A screengrab from a conference held by the Tobago Council of the PNM on Tuesday, via Tobago Channel 5.

The run-off vote in the PNM Tobago Council internal election has been rescheduled to Sunday.

The run-off, which was originally set for February 2, was moved up by a week as leadership hopeful Deputy Chief Secretary Joel Jack requested a recount of the ballots.

Sunday’s run-off will see a repeat of the 2016 internal election – a battle between incumbent leader Kelvin Charles and Tracy Davidson-Celestine.

The election, which was held last Sunday, saw a delay in results being delivered following the close of polls at 6 pm. This led to a recount of ballots on Monday at 2 pm, which ended late in the evening.

Jack came in third with 1066 votes, taking him out of the leadership race. Charles gained the most votes, 1515, beating Davidson-Celestine by just 68 votes.

Just under 10,000 party members were eligible to vote.

At a conference on Tuesday, Charles and Davidson-Celestine expressed confidence ahead of Sunday’s run-off vote.

Charles urged party members to ensure that they act in a manner that upholds the party’s principles as they enter the second round of voting on Sunday.

“I urge all of us as we go in­to the next round and all the mem­bers, notwith­stand­ing your pre­ferred sup­port, let’s do so with the re­quired dig­ni­ty, and the re­quired decorum."

Meanwhile, Davidson-Celestine announced that she would give up her ambassadorship once she is elected as the council’s new leader.

“When I win come Sunday, January 26, I will re­sign my position because the time is short. It’s a temporary position and I will be very present in Tobago to ensure the party is organised in a particular manner and that we can win the next set of elections- both the general election and the Tobago House of Assembly elections.”

Seventeen positions, including the council’s leadership, were up for grabs in last Sunday’s elections.

Former Tobago House of Assembly (THA) presiding officer Dr Denise Tsoiafatt Angus also contested the leadership of the party.

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