Congress of the People (COP) political leader Carolyn Seepersad-Bachan has claimed that the party has regained much of the support which it had when it was first launched over a decade ago.
Seepersad-Bachan made the statement while addressing supporters at the launch of the party’s new office at the corner of Evans and Jackson Streets in Curepe, on Sunday.
Seepersad-Bachan said: “We are seeing a return of the core COP members which stood with us in 2007.”
In the 2007 general election, the COP earned the accolade of securing the most votes by a third political party since Independence. Although the party received 148,041 votes, it did not secure a seat in Parliament.
Seepersad-Bachan admitted that the party had made political mistakes in the past, but claimed that it had learned from them, to ensure that they are not repeated.
“It is about looking at errors we have made, the mistakes we have made and where we went wrong and fixing those mistakes for the future. That is the only way we can make progress in our country,” Seepersad-Bachan said.
She said that her party was firmly committed to participatory governance where citizens have a greater say in the work of the Government.
“Our people are ready to take that charge. The Congress of the People is the only place where that would take place, not the other parties,” Seepersad-Bachan said.
In his address at the event, COP founding member and former political leader Winston Dookeran said the party’s symbol “Circle of Circles” truly reflected the party’s ideology of inclusivity.
“The symbol is really the reflection of the philosophy that led to the formation of this party, which is to bring all constituent units of this country together as one whole,” Dookeran said.
He claimed that the People’s National Movement (PNM)’s “Balisier flower” was a symbol of self-rule and the United National Congress (UNC)’s “Rising Sun” was meant to create a new hope in a divided society, and that both had lost relevance in today’s society.
“What you have in this party is a symbol that lasts forever,” Dookeran said.
The COP’s new office is the third to be recently opened, after others were launched in Edinburgh, Chaguanas, and Arouca. A fourth is expected to be opened in the San Juan/Barataria constituency in the coming weeks.
The party intends to contest all electoral districts in the local government polls on December 2. It has not announced which constituencies it will present candidates for in the general election next year.