PNM: We’ll bring the change Tobago needs

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

PNM supporters cheer on Saturday in support at the opening of a district office for PNM Tobago leader and Signal Hill/Patience Hill candidate Tracy Davidson-Celestine. – David Reid

“You don’t have to change political parties to get change.”

So said THA Chief Secretary Ancil Dennis, the People’s National Movement’s (PNM) candidate for Buccoo/Mt Pleasant as the battle for the December 6 Tobago House of Assembly (THA) election heats up.

On Sunday evening, the party’s Tobago Council hosted its presentation of 15 candidates at the Shaw Park Cultural Complex.

In his address, Dennis said he has heard a lot of talk about 21 years of PNM in Tobago and that it’s time for change, but he begged to differ.

He said: “I want to remind the people of Tobago and the people of Trinidad and Tobago that the last time this country asked for change and the last time we got the change that we asked for in 2010, we nearly didn’t get the change from the last dollar left in the treasury. And therefore, I am saying to the people of Tobago, that within this distinguished political organisation we have had change because I am saying from Orville London, Kelvin Charles – that was change.

“The fact that you have 15 candidates here representing the People’s National Movement, a number of them new faces – I am saying that represents change and therefore you don’t have to change political parties in order to get change.”

Dennis said PNM is improving infrastructure and providing lands to farmers to boost the agri sector to produce food for Tobago and Trinidad.

He said the THA has also made doing business at the Cove industrial park easier by slashing the leases by almost 50 per cent.

“I can talk all night about the PNM track record even if I was limiting it to the last 18 months…With (PDP deputy) Farley Augustine, Tobago cannot win. Tobago must not be duped by (PDP leader) Watson Duke.”

Saying the PNM will protect Tobago’s future, Dennis said his party is the only choice to govern this island in very difficult circumstances.

Chief Secretary Ancil Dennis – Office of Chief Secretary

Also speaking on Sunday was PNM Tobago Council leader Tracy Davidson-Celestine.

Alluding to the PDP arrangement of Augustine being the party’s choice for chief secretary, Davidson-Celestine said the PNM was different and she was not hiding behind anyone.

“I do not need any proxy,” she said.

Davidson-Celestine said the PNM has hit the reset the button with fresh, exciting candidates.

“Just look at the candidates here…young and experienced. These are the faces of the future of Tobago.”

Davidson-Celestine said the PNM has a plan to see the private sector employ the majority of the island’s labour force as opposed to the THA.

“We need to rise up from our brutal covid losses and to a people-centred future.”

The PNM leader also promised funding for business start-ups, home ownership with land and affordable home mortgages, “to help young people do more with their lives.

“This is not a future of chaos and big, empty promises.

“For me, our vision is very clear. We see a pathway for well diversified, environmentally-friendly Tobago.

“This election is the first step to returning towards a wholesome life. Do you want to risk all of that?”

PNM Tobago leader Tracy Davidson-Celestine, left, chats with resident Mavena Gordon of Patience Hill during a recent walkabout. – David Reid

PNM’s slate are:

Tracy Davidson-Celestine – Signal Hill/Patience Hill

Ancil Dennis – Buccoo/Mt Pleasant

Clarence Jacob – Bon-Accord/Crown Point

Kenneth Thomas – Belle Garden/Glamorgan

Franka Cordner – Parlatuvier/Speyside/L’Anse Fourmi

Marslyn Melville-Jack – Scarborough/Mt Grace

Learie Paul – Black Rock/Plymouth

Kelvon Morris – Darrel Spring/Whim

Downie Marcelle – Bethel/New Grange

Joel Jack – Bacolet/Bagatelle

Brian Thomas – Bethesda/Les Coteaux

Charles Adams – Mt St George/Goodwood

Laurence Hislop – Mason Hall/Moriah

Kino Mc Kenzie – Lambeau/Lowlands

Nadine Stewart-Phillips – Roxborough/ Argyle