While stating that he will encourage the secretariat of the governing Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) to select a good candidate for St Elizabeth North East, JLP member of parliament Daryl Vaz last evening expressed confidence that his party will win the seat in the next general election.
The seat is being represented in parliament by Evon Redman of the opposition People’s National Party (PNP). He beat the JLP’s Dr Saphire Longmore in the last general election, polling 1,520 more votes than his JLP challenger.
Redman will not seek re-election, and so the PNP recently selected Basil Waite to replace him as the party’s candidate next time round.
During an appreciation function last evening, June 23, Vaz noted that St Elizabeth North East is the only seat in the parish the JLP did not win last election.
The party won the other three seats with Floyd Green in St Elizabeth South West, Frank Witter in St Elizabeth South East, and JC Hutchinson in St Elizabeth North West.
Vaz, who said St Elizabeth North East is also winnable, claimed that the PNP’s machinery in the constituency is now ‘shaky’ as a result of in-fighting.
He also said residents of the constituency are increasingly clamouring for JLP representation, and he will finally do something about that.
“I am going to advise the leader [of the JLP Andrew Holness] and the secretariat to find the right candidate for that constituency, and I am going to spend some time there,” Vaz promised.
“It is time we pay some attention to that seat because the people down there have been sending signals to us and we have not taken them up.”
Vaz reasoned that all seats are winnable.
“Nothing name cyaan win; nutten name cyaan win,” he declared during an appreciation dinner in Green’s St Elizabeth South West seat.
He continued: “If you do the work and you find the right candidate, and you support the right candidate, all things are possible. And I am serving a warning to the Peoples National Party tonight that the Jamaica Labour Party is coming to wipe out St Elizabeth 4-0 in the next election.”
By Horace Mills