New PNP candidate for East Portland within two weeks, says Phillips
Dr Peter Phillips (file photo)
Amid concerns about who will represent the People's National Party (PNP) in the East Portland constituency, the party's leader, Dr Peter Phillips, has sought to assure supporters that a new candidate will be selected within two weeks.
It was revealed on Sunday by PNP General Secretary, Julian Robinson, that the party was vetting a number of persons who have expressed interest in representing the party in East Portland following the resignation of caretaker/candidate for the constituency, Damion Crawford.
Crawford, in a radio interview more than a week ago, said that participating in representational politics, especially in East Portland, had affected his business. He further stated that he wanted to step aside from the seat and other duties to focus on rebuilding his business ventures.
In addressing party supporters on the matter of a new candidate for East Portland in Port Antonio during a PNP road tour of eastern parishes on Thursday, Phillips said more persons were applying for the post and the process of selection was being treated carefully.
"I know that you have concerns about who is your standard bearer, and I'm saying to you (the supporters), give me and the party leadership two weeks. We having more and more people coming forward - good people - who say they want to be the representative of the people of East Portland, but we are going through a careful process," Phillips indicated.
He said despite the loss suffered in the recent by-election, the PNP remained strong in the seat, and will retake it whenever the next General Elections are called.
Crawford, who remains a PNP vice-president, was parachuted into the East Portland constituency to contest the April 4 by-election following the stabbing death of then Member of Parliament (MP), Dr Lynvale Broomfield, in February of last year.
Crawford was defeated by Jamaica Labour Party's (JLP) Ann-Marie Vaz in the hotly contested by-election by just over 300 votes.