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Moonilal backing Kamla in UNC internals

Published: 
Sunday, October 22, 2017

Oropouche East MP Dr Roodal Moonilal says he will not contest the leadership of the United National Congress (UNC) in the November 6 internal elections.

Given the current political climate, Moonilal said the Government could collapse in the coming months and a general election could follow in the new year. Therefore, he said the UNC was in need of unity and he would throw his support behind the current leadership, including Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar who he fiercely contested against two years ago.

"At this time in our party, unity is needed more than gold, given where we are and the collapse of the Government. The mass flooding, uncontrolled crime, corruption and incompetence; this Government is on the verge of collapsing and it is a time for the party to be united, strong and focused,

"It could be a matter of days before we form the government again and we must be focused and that requires a unity of purpose. It is not a time for division and conflict as we can have a general election by the end of this year or early next year. The current executive, including Mrs Persad-Bissesar, has been there for two years they have done a good job in the circumstances of an opposition and they should be allowed to continue working," Moonilal said.

Vasant still unsure about contesting

The 2015 internal elections was marred by bitterness over the People's Partnership loss of the general election months before. Allegations of corruption, voter padding and dumped ballots plagued the process. It was, for this reason, former leadership candidate Vasant Bharath was unsure whether he would contest.

"I will be giving serious consideration, but I need to consult with my team that I have been working with for the last year, " Bharath told the Guardian on Sunday.

He said he will need certain assurances from whoever is appointed as the election officer, that there will be accountability in the process.

The internal election will take place between 8 am and 6 pm. UNC public relations officer Anita Haynes said 18 of the 20 posts will be contested while the positions of Women's Arm Officer and Youth Affairs Officer will be contested later on.

Nomination forms would be available at the UNC Head Office, Exchange Village, Couva, from October 30 to November 8.