Dubbed the “All-Star Walkabout” the twelve PNM candidates in the upcoming THA elections canvassed the Roxborough district on Thursday afternoon.
Flanked by their various supporters and campaign strategy teams, the large group gathered at Breadfruit Alley at Roxborough before taking the community by storm publicly endorsing the PNM candidate for the area Neil Beckles.
The Roxborough/Delaford/Argyle seat is currently held by the PDP’s, Watson Duke.
The contingent eventually broke away into small groups as they seemed chaotic at times and were not observing COVID-19 protocols.
Following the walkabout, the Political Leader of the Tobago Council Tracy Davidson-Celestine declared that Beckles was considered “another Hilton Sandy and a step in the right direction.”
Hilton Sandy who represented the PNM, held the Roxborough/Delaford seat from 2001 until he suffered a stroke in 2018. Sandy was also heavily criticized for his infamous “Calcutta Ship” arriving from Trinidad statement during the THA elections in January 2013, this was during the People’s Partnership term in office. He once again shot into the headlines in August 2015, after being ordered by the Tobago High Court to vacate his matrimonial home at New Providence Road, Riseland Trace, Carnbee. Sandy who was 70 at the time earlier appeared in court to answer a domestic violence complaint brought by his 32-year-old wife Candice Chang-Sandy.
According to Davidson-Celestine Beckles “will do well in terms of representation.”
“For the people of Roxborough/Delaford – we are here with you we will continue to develop your village and work with you,” Davidson-Celestine said.
Beckles whose tag line is “Keeping it real with Neil,” said he was grateful for the support of his peers.
“We will bring home this seat, but making it happen depends on the collective effort of all of us and the people of Roxborough who have given me a lot of support.”
The walkabout also served as an opportunity for new faces in the political arena to be introduced to the public, as Representative for Tobago East Ayanna Webster Roy endorsed one of the newcomers to the PNM slate, Melissa James Guy, candidate for the Plymouth Golden Lane district.
Guy said based on feedback from the residents, the community is “neglected by the current representative.”
This is the first time the Tobago Council adopted “the All-Star Walkabout” the strategy and according to correspondence from the communications arm of the PNM Tobago Council, “the walkabout is a part of our approach to governance reflecting a team approach to supporting each other in his or her electoral district.”
The statement added, “And although we can’t engage people in traditional ways, we will still reach our people in a meaningful way.”