Chairman of the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) machinery in St. Catherine North West, Newton Amos, has defended the selection of Listra Clemetson as the recommended candidate for the party in the Linstead Division of the constituency.
Clemetson was among four people vying for the right to represent the JLP in the division in the next Local Government Election.
The others included well-known community activist Clement Dehaney. In a video last month, he expressed regret that he was not selected, but he stated that he will “work with” the party’s decision.
“The party had made a decision and I will work with all the decisions that they have made… I really wanted to represent Linstead; I really wanted to represent my community, but unfortunately I won’t,” he added, while promising to remain socially active in his native Linstead.
In the meantime, not much is known in local media circles about Clemetson.
When The Beacon asked her via phone last evening to state the schools she attended and the community where she is from – as a starter, she requested that the questions be submitted via email.
Amos, in the meantime, said the selection process has been in train for some time ahead of an Area Council Two meeting on August 28, when a decision was made to recommend Clemetson.
Reeling off a plethora of criteria that each aspirant was required to meet, Amos explained: “They would have been asked to produce certain documentation and an investigation would have started looking at their character, their likability, the capacity to carry out and represent the Jamaica Labour Party, and represent the people of their various spaces. When that is done, they go through an interview that is determined by the Area Council [Two]. They are rigorously interviewed…”
Amos further stated that he did not show any favouritism during the selection process.
“As chairman for the constituency, I treat every single one of the candidates equally so that they can’t go out and say, as chairman for the constituency, I am biased. None of them can accuse me of that,” he asserted.
“All of them got an equal chance to show themselves… When the [final] decision is made, I will throw my support behind the person that the party had selected…” Amos further told The Beacon.
He was the JLP candidate in Linstead Division in the last Local Government Elections that was held in November 2016. According to the Electoral Office of Jamaica, Amos polled 1,131 votes compared to the People’s National Party’s Herbert Garriques who amassed 1,258 votes. The People’s National Party has been winning the division for many years.
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