PDP deputy leader Farley Augustine and political leader Watson Duke speak to supporters outside the Tobago House of Assembly yesterday.

Camille McEachnie

The Progressive Democratic Patriots’ (PDP’s) Farley Augustine is calling on the party’s supporters to be patient.

He said yesterday, the People’s National Movement (PNM) wanted to remain in office without meeting to elect a presiding officer to oversee the Tobago House of Assembly’s (THA’s) legislative arm.

The two parties met yesterday in the Assembly Chamber to elect a presiding officer but the election ended in a deadlock.

Each party recommended a presiding officer and cast secret and public ballots in favour of their choices.

Addressing supporters directly after the meeting ended, Augustine asked for patience.

“There is a need for patience. This will work out eventually,” he said.

He told supporters he understood how they felt.

“By having the old executive in place, it is undemocratic and while we have heard some legal minds saying it is illegal, not every undemocratic decision or action is illegal. It’s undemocratic in so far as we will have a situation where an Executive Council will continue to make decisions for this island without the scrutiny of a House. We will not be able to ask them a question.”

Some PDP supporters turned up to greet the PDP elected members outside the Assembly chamber.

“Stand your ground! Stand your ground!” they chanted.

One supporter said: “What happened here is that you had a party with 10 seats and one with two. The population found that 10 were too much for them, they took away four. Now to impose that same regime as a government on the people of Tobago…in other countries it has encouraged civil conflict.”

All 12 members were sworn in earlier by President Paula-Mae Weekes at the Magdalena Hotel and Golf Course earlier in the day.

Elected THA Assemblymen

PDP representatives:

• ↓Farley Chavez Augustine – Parlatuvier/L’Anse Fourmi /Speyside

• ↓Dr. Faith B.Yisrael – Belle Garden West/Goodwood

• ↓Zorisha Hackette – Plymouth/Golden Lane

• ↓Ian Pollard – Providence/Mason Hall/Moriah

• ↓Terence Baynes – Bethel/Mt. Irvine

• ↓Watson Duke – Belle Garden East/Roxborough/Delaford.

PNM representatives:

• ↓Tracy Davidson – Celestine-Lambeau/Signal Hill.

• ↓Clarence Jacob – Canaan/Bon Accord

• ↓Marslyn Melville – Jack-Scarborough/Calder Hall

• ↓Ancil Dennis – Bucco/Mt Pleasant

• ↓Joel Jack – Bacolet/Mt.St.George

• ↓Kelvon Morris – Black Rock/Whim/Spring Garden.