Senior Political Reporter
UNC chairman Dave Tancoo has trashed the movement of some former members now supporting the PNM, saying karma will deal with them.
And PNM chairman Stuart Young has rubbished UNC claims that some “PNM operatives” are supplying the UNC with information and clandestine support.
All of this after certain UNC officials resigned from the party and joined the PNM—and as election high gear continues with the start of the UNC’s screening of its Local Government election nominees tomorrow (Thurs) and the close of PNM nominations on Friday.
The latest to “cross” from UNC to PNM were former UNC Arima Central councillor Sheldon Garcia and ex-UNC Youth Arm officer Kaveesh Siewdial. Warrenville councillor Samuel Sankar, who also resigned from UNC, remains mum on his direction. Garcia has offered himself as a PNM nominee for Arima Central for LG election.
A number of incumbents in both UNC and PNM are seeking return. But new faces are expected for PNM in areas including PoS, Diego Martin and other East-West corridor corporations, Chaguanas and San Fernando.
UNC is also expected to have new faces among others in Sangre Grande, San Fernando, Arima, East-West corridor areas and San Juan.
On Monday, UNC’s Tancoo, emphasising the party will win LG polls, said, “Anybody who endorses the PNM track record of corruption—the worst murder rate in history, home invasions and violent robberies, failure to protect women and children, worse roads, flooding, unreliable water supply, property tax, joblessness, higher food prices, abuse of the law that the Privy Council had to correct —does not have this country at heart.
“Our country is in economic and social crisis because of the deliberate actions of the PNM leadership. If they support that, then they are endorsing the sufferation of the country for the benefit of a few.”
He added, “Karma will deal with them. The UNC remains committed to rescuing this nation and fighting against oppression, corruption and the emerging dictatorship and we welcome all to join us in rescuing our nation,”
After the resignations, other UNC officials said the party has “several PNM operatives,” including certain current officials who are “unhappy with the way PNM is being run” and are providing clandestine support to the Opposition.”
The UNC sources said the party would allow those persons to “remain in place in the PNM to continue accessing information and plans from them.” Several PNM Senators denied they’re assisting UNC.
Among the main corporation areas regarded as marginal “swing” site for election victory, PNM San Fernando LG co-ordinator (Agriculture Minister) Kazim Hosein didn’t answer calls.
But PNM Sangre Grande co-ordinator (Toco MP) Roger Munro told T&T Guardian on Monday, “All’s well in our arm of the party. I’m not aware of any falling out. But we’re in a political atmosphere and if some may be disgruntled or not, it’s left to be seen. However, I think talk about PNM people ‘helping’ UNC is more likely a ‘sour grapes’ response to what’s happening with people leaving them.”
PNM chairman Young, replying to a query on the speculation, said, “The PNM is a political party and a serious institution that has withstood the test of time. We are 68 years old and our structure is a phenomenal one that I’m proud to be a part of and to serve in.
“The UNC Opposition is not a source of information that I’d place trust in. Unfortunately, they appear to believe that misinformation, creating confusion and misleading the population is beneficial to them. I have confidence in the PNM and its ability to continue governing in the best interest of the people of T&T and I pay little regard to intentional Opposition mischief.”