United National Congress (UNC) chairman Jack Warner has reminded their detractors that in 1960, the late Dr Eric Williams had burnt several important documents, including the T&T Constitution, to symbolise a new way forward.
Defending his political leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar, Warner said: "My dear friends, in politics there are certain times when symbolically great people who are bringing out new movements have burnt documents and last night, a great woman who is bringing out a great People's Partnership in government tore up a manifesto to mark the dawn of a new era in this country. "I want Jerry Lewis (Narace) to know what Kamla did last night (Tuesday) was a great symbol of the past...A PNM past of failed promises," he said. Persad-Bissessar was criticised by Narace for tearing up the PNM's manifesto at Gasparillo junction on Tuesday night. Describing the PNM's manifesto as a "photo album," he reminded Narace that in 1960 Williams, the father of the nation, burnt several documents at Woodford Square on his march to Chaguaramas.
Among the documents burnt by Dr Williams, Warner said, were the 1941 Chaguaramas least agreement, the 1956 T&T constitution, a statement on Guyana written by Dr Rudranath Capildeo, the report of the Federal capital site, the Telephone Ordinance of 1939 and six copies of the Trinidad Guardian. "Eric Williams, Eric Williams...and all Kamla did is tear up a foolish manifesto," Warner said. "In Williams' bonfire, those documents which he burnt symbolised Williams rejection of the past...When he burnt those documents, Williams said it was a symbol of moving forward." He said if they had more than one copy of the manifesto that night, they would have torn it all up. Wading into Works and Transport Minister Colm Imbert, who had called on Persad-Bissessar to say what her stance was on abortion, he said the People's Partnership would not be distracted by that "foolishness."
Over the past week, he said, their detractors had been saying things about Persad-Bissessar and himself, but "talk is cheap." He, however, sounded a warning: "They could say what they want about Kamla, but if any of them touch a single lock of Kamla hair they touch my whole body!" Warner also said he was brought to tears when he heard Subhas Panday defending Persad-Bissessar and himself (Warner) on their platform. He said Panday was an example of a true team player.