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RAMADHAR’s VICTORY STRENGTHENS PP
The coalition that Patrick Manning said would collapse in its infancy has grown up and matured as it begins its fifth year. And with Prakash Ramadhar’s re-election as leader of the Congress of the People (COP), it remains strong and united. That’s bad news for the PNM and worse news for the Independent Liberal Party (ILP), which had pinned its hopes on a different result that could have led to an alliance with COP.
During the campaign, ILP’s new leader, Lyndira Oudit, stated her party would work out a partnership arrangement with Carolyn Seepersad-Bachan once she was elected leader. One newspaper report quoted Oudit as saying the ILP would be prepared to undertake “full-scale alliance talks” with Seepersad-Bachan if she defeated Ramadhar in the internal elections.
The optimism that Seepersad-Bachan would score an upset victory was based on a strong endorsement for the San Fernando West MP from COP’s founding leader, Winston Dookeran. Dookeran said under Ramadhar’s leadership, COP had become a “shadow” of the party he founded. Seepersad-Bachan would restore COP to its glory, Dookeran boasted.
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