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Muradali takes San Fernando reins today
The chamber of the San Fernando City Corporation has been blessed in preparation for the installation of new mayor Dr Navi Muradali this morning. The official mayoral vehicle has also been blessed. For the first time in 24 years another medical doctor will be installed as mayor of the city. Muradali, a medical doctor and dental surgeon, will take the oath of office at a simple ceremony at the city auditorium. Coudray, who resigned last Sunday after being appointed Minister of Gender, Youth and Child Development in the Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar’s reconfigured Cabinet, will not be handing over the mayoral chain. The corporation’s chief executive officer Deodath Ragoobar will administer the oath of office, while the head of the City Police will bedeck the incoming Muradali with the mayoral chain. Coudray, who shared a contentious relationship with her former deputy, is not expected to attend the ceremony. Local Government Minister Dr Suruj Rambachan, as well as Leader of the Congress of the People (COP) Prakash Ramadhar are expected to attend. A new deputy mayor will be elected to replace Muradali; two aldermen to replace Coudray and Kenny Phillip, the latter having resigned earlier this year. Chairmen of committees wil also be named.
However, according to law the deputy mayor and aldermen will take their oaths of office, three (working) days after election, next Wednesday. Muradali, 38, the councillor for Les Efforts East/Cipero will become the seventh mayor since San Fernando achieved City status on November 18, 1988. The first mayor of San Fernando was Dr Romesh Mootoo, who was appointed by the then National Alliance For Reconstruction (NAR) government. Muradali, a foundation member of the Congress of the People (COP), which is an off-shoot of the NAR and the second largest member of the People’s Partnership (PP), also fought and lost the Princes Town North seat in the December 5, 2007 general election. His father, Nazim, was a former member of parliament for Naparima. Coudray, who also fought the San Fernando West seat on a COP ticket in 2007, switched allegiance to the main PP partner, the United National Congress (UNC), midway in her term as mayor and was elected one of the party’s deputy political leaders. The official installation will be followed by the regular monthly statutory meeting usually held on a Thursday.
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