Jamaica Observer / People’s National Party (PNP) candidate for the April 27 by-election in the Yallahs Division in St Thomas Western, Constantine Bogle is urging residents to vote for him. “You can’t go wrong when you vote for Bogle,” he said while speaking to journalists after he was nominated at the Yallahs Baptist Church Hall, last Tuesday.
Bogle, who will be going up against the Jamaica Labour Party’s (JLP) John Lee, said that he was offering himself because he is sure he can win.
The division became vacant after former JLP Councillor Dean Jones was disqualified, following a ruling by the Supreme Court.
According to the High Court, Jones’ disqualification was on the grounds that, at the time of the November 2016 Local Government Elections, he was employed to the Government.
Last Tuesday, Bogle accused the JLP of “exploiting” residents of the division and argued that something must be done to stem this.
He added that a lot of people in the division are unable to read and noted that their economic plight caused them to be easily exploited by the current Government.
“People just exploit them and wait on the last two days before the election. I don’t hold down my mouth and say it. The Jamaica Labour Party is guilty of this in a very serious kind of way. Something must be done about this; this democracy is for sale,” insisted Bogle.
In the meantime, he expressed confidence of victory when asked about his chances.
“Without confidence you are twice defeated in the race; I just do what I have to do. I don’t know anything about John Lee, but I have been giving service to the people of Yallahs and the people of St Thomas for a countless amount of years now,” Bogle shared.
He said he knows that the people are aware that they made a mistake in voting for Jones and urged them to correct it on April 27.
“Nothing is wrong with making mistakes, so we looking forward to a great election. I hope and trust, based on the grace of the most high, that the people will continue to give their support to Constantine Bogle based on the work I’ve done, based on the fact that I live among them, same place here in the Yallahs Division,” said Bogle.
Chairman of the PNP Fitz Jackson said that the by-election “is an opportunity to right a wrong”, and at the same time said that the JLP lacks morals because the party allowed Jones to run.
Jackson said Jones knowingly breached the provisions of the Act by having himself nominated and the courts have confirmed this, referring to the Supreme Court ruling that disqualified Jones.
He said: “The JLP lacked the moral authority to say to that gentleman (Jones) ‘You cannot stand on behalf of the party’; and decided to pursue that wrong, to pursue that fraud against the electoral system in Jamaica.”
“It’s unfortunate, regrettable,” he lamented, adding “I really hope that the well-thinking people of the Yallahs Division here in West St Thomas will stand up, because they have a long history in Jamaica for standing up for what is right on a principled basis. We invite the spirit of Paul Bogle to rise again and stand up for another Bogle, “for what is right.”
Meanwhile, Jackson said that the party is confident that its candidate will win the seat this time around after having lost to Jones in November 2016. Bogle is also a former councillor for the division.
A total of 31 polling stations situated across seven voting locations will be used in the division, while 83 election Day workers will be required to conduct the election, with a budget of $9.5 million that has been allocated to the Electoral Commission to carry it out.
The November 30, 2017 voters’ list will be used for the election.