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Hinds still in running for Laventille East

Tuesday, October 2, 2007
Donna Cox

Laventille nominee

  • PNM nominee an unknown
  • Nominee will support party’s decision
  • Manning “cleaning house”

Cheridan Woodruffe says he knows of only two nominees to be screened for the Laventille East/Morvant constituency today at Balisier House in Port-of-Spain.

Minister of State in the Ministry of National Security Fitzgerald Hinds is the incumbent MP for this constituency.

The two nominees are Jeffrey Reyes and Keith Eddy.

It was reported in a daily newspaper yesterday that corporate communications officer at National Flour Mills, Donna Cox, was tipped as the candidate for the seat.

However, Woodruffe, manager of Hinds’ Laventille East/Morvant constituency, said he knew nothing about this development.

“I don’t know (about Donna Cox). We are still following the (screening) process and we have had no further instructions,” Woodruffe said in a telephone interview, yesterday.

Several attempts to contact Cox yesterday were futile, as the Guardian was told she was on another line; she was in a meeting; and she was out of the office.

Calls to her mobile phone went unanswered.

Hinds was screened on September 14, but the constituency’s executive was mandated later by the central executive to “continue the search for another nominee.”

Woodruffe denied that Hinds was out of the running.

“He is going back before the screening committee tomorrow (today). We will continue with the search for other candidates, but that does not mean that Mr Hinds has been rejected,” Woodruffe said.

Reyes is a former chairman of the San Juan/Laventille Regional Corporation, but according to Reyes, no one seemed to know who was Keith Eddy.

“Honestly, I do not know anything about him. Up to the last meeting with the executive, they wanted Hinds.

“We will not know what is happening until after the executive meeting this afternoon (Monday),” Woodruffe said.

Good feedback from ground level—Reyes

Reyes said he had got good responses “from the ground level.”

One of two people scheduled to be screened by the PNM’s screening committee today, Reyes said he was nominated by three party executives.

He was also nominated in 2000, but the executive went with incumbent Hinds.

Reyes said he decided to take up the executive’s offer because of his history in the community.

“I have been a councillor for 20 years and was the chairman of the San Juan/Laventille Regional Corporation for four years.

“I have gotten good feedback on the ground, and I feel I can represent the people of Laventille East/Morvant.”

However, Reyes said whoever the party selected would have his full support.

“I will accept any decision made by the party.”

Clean-up time

A PNM source said yesterday that PM Manning had been wanting to “clean up for the longest while.

“A party does not want to eat its leader, and Mr Manning is the best thing for the PNM.

“He has wanted to get clean house and get rid of the heavy weights for a long time now,” the source said.


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