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PM not daunted by St Joseph defeat

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

In the face of a fourth consecutive election defeat Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar has rallied her troops, declaring, “We live to fight another day.” Persad-Bissessar, addressing supporters on Monday night at the United National Congress (UNC) St Joseph constituency office, Aranguez Main Road, Aranguez, magnanimously pledged to work with victorious People’s National Movement (PNM) candidate Terrence Deyalsingh.



On Monday, Deyalsingh defeated UNC candidate Ian Alleyne by 779 votes to win the seat, previously held by UNC MP Herbert Volney. Deyalsingh copped 6,356 votes while Alleyne received 5,577 votes. Persad-Bissessar conceded the UNC’s defeat in the hotly contested St Joseph by-election and congratulated Deyalsingh on his win.


“Whilst the results would have been very close I always say we must accept the voice of the people in their votes. We accept it and we congratulate Mr Deyalsingh on winning St Joseph,” Persad-Bissessar said. Her sombre reflection was a far cry from her speech last month at Rienzi Complex, Couva, when she did not accept defeat after People’s Partnership lost local government elections. On Monday, however, Persad-Bissessar admitted the battle for St Joseph was a “hard fight” and urged supporters not to lose hope.


She extended her hand to all citizens. “We continue in office, we remain committed and dedicated to serving all the citizens of T&T regardless of where you are, who you are, the political party you come from. That is my duty and my job as your Prime Minister,” she declared. The Government, she said, remains committed to serving all of the people of T&T. “Have no fear your government is here with a very firm mandate to deliver, deliver and deliver,” she said.


Persad-Bissessar praised the Elections and Boundaries Commission for the conduct of four elections in one year and ensuring the elections were “free, fair and peaceful.” UNC deputy political leader Dr Roodal Moonilal also urged supporters to be strong and confident.



“We are sure with your support, your love and with your dedication in the coming days and weeks and months we will rescue this seat (St Joseph.)  We will rescue all those seats that the Opposition has and we will return our government, the People’s Partnership, to office in 2015,” he said.


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