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UNC eyes Enill for safe seat

Sunday, May 17, 2015
Conrad Enill

Former PNM energy minister Conrad Enill is being eyed as a potential candidate by the United National Congress (UNC) for its 2015 re-election bid.

Well-placed sources within the party said that Enill’s name had come up in campaign strategy meetings as a possible candidate who would be integral to the party’s energy plans should they be re-elected.

According to party sources, the UNC is considering approaching Enill with the offer of a “safe seat” on the party’s 2015 general election slate.

This week, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar opened nominations for all 41 constituencies and scores of potential candidates, including chutney star Ramrajee Prabhu, collected their forms.

For the past few years, Enill has been out of the political limelight, only surfacing briefly to make public comments on energy-related issues, especially the impact of falling global oil and gas prices on the T&T economy.

Contacted by the Sunday Guardian for comment, the former minister, who was appointed under the Patrick Manning regime and demitted office when the PNM lost power in 2010 to the People’s Partnership, said he had no idea that the UNC was considering him as a candidate.

Enill, asked if he would consider accepting a UNC offer, said “I do not know because I don’t know. I have things that I am working on right now, things that are very important to me.”

Enill said it was easily recognised that he had not been involved in “any political activities at this time. I am busy teaching and doing some other stuff.” 

Pressed on whether he would consider a return to frontline electoral politics, Enill said, “I have not considered those things at this point in time because I have been away for the last five years.”

Party sources also indicated that the UNC was experiencing a “youth upsurge” with young members signalling their intention to offer themselves as potential candidates for the general election.

Just this week, former judge and temporary government senator Larry Lalla collected his nomination form to offer himself as a possible candidate.

Other youth members considering contesting seats are UNC Youth Arm chairman Nicholas Morris, Arnold Ram, Ambassador Neil Parsan, and party chairman Khadijah Ameen.

Shane Mohammed, UNC international relations officer, has also collected his form to be screened for the Princes Town seat.


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