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PNM to start screening for local govt elections
The People’s National Movement (PNM) will start screening candidates for the local government elections next month. The announcement was made by party chairman Franklin Khan at yesterday’s press conference at Balisier House, Port-of-Spain. Khan said political leader Dr Keith Rowley made an official call to all 39 constituencies at general council for the start of nomination for candidates who will be screened by him (Rowley).
As part of the party’s organisation structure, Khan said, a campaign manager and 14 regional co-ordinators have been appointed. Their names were not disclosed. The PNM controls three corporations: San Juan/Laventille, Point Fortin and Port-of-Spain. Some of the qualities the PNM will be looking for in a candidate are willingness to serve, decorum and integrity. “We don’t want anyone with a shady past,” Khan said.
Coming out of the THA election, Khan said, their slate of 134 candidates must show gender, age, ethnic and religious balance. Khan said last year the PNM changed its constitution, where they disbanded the veto power of the party leader over the choice of candidates. “We have now vested that power in the entire screening committee. So this is the first time we will be testing the new waters, as it were, and to show the party is more democratic. So now the constituency executive will have a greater say in candidates.”
Admitting the PNM performed badly in the last election, Khan said, if it captures seven of the 14 corporations or more than 67 seats, the party can claim to have won the election. “But our target is to win more than seven corporations.”
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