|A vote for Khadijah is a vote to secure your future and your children's future|
At the time he was very clear that he would seek the nomination for the United National Congress (UNC) from which he had also just resigned following his sudden departure from cabinet.
He told everyone that he remained loyal to the UNC and its leader and that his vision never changed. He added that no one could take the UNC out of him because he was "UNC to the bone".
But this diehard UNC turned green the moment the UNC announced that it preferred Khadijah Ameen as its candidate. In less that a week, Jack had a new party - the Independent Liberal Party (ILP) - and he declared that as its interim leader he would contest the seat.
It is clear that Jack anticipated the UNC decision and had put everything in place for the ILP announcement long before any decision was announced. In other words, while he was telling everyone he was UNC to the bone he was forming a party to undermine the very party that he had helped to build and take to government.
That was a betrayal because he knew that he was forming a party even before he faced the screening committee. And his pledge to support the UNC and its leader went out the door with the change from yellow to green.
All of a sudden he was hurling insults at his former leader, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, finding all manner of unpleasant things to reveal. As the campaign progressed the woman whom he dubbed the best PM and the best leader in the forseable future had become a target in his campaign to win back Chaguanas West.
His actions leave many questions unanswered.
- How can you be supportive of a leader and then insult her by saying she is unable to lead and is under the influence of people who work with her? There is a clear contradiction.
- How can you say you support the government and attack members of that government at every turn without providing the evidence to support the claims of improper conduct?
- And how could you have the same vision when you are attacking the leader and cabinet ministers every day?
- How can you be seeking membership in the People's Partnership while fighting an election against a member of that partnership?
- And can you genuinely expect people to believe that this is just about Chaguanas West?
Then there is the question about the vision and philosophy of this new party. If Jack's vision has not changed are we to assume that the ILP's vision is the same as the UNC? Then what is the point of a new party?
It leads one to believe that Jack's aim all along was to take over the UNC and replace its leader. Once it was clear that this was not going to happen he cut all ties with the party and started working against the UNC.
And how can anyone explain the racism coming from Jack's Guyanese guest, Jailal Kissoon? Like the infamous Calcutta Ship incident, the apology seemed insincere and too late.
The UNC's candidate, Khadijah Ameen, stayed away from attacking Jack and even asked Jack to join her if he truly believed in the things he said constituted his vision. Kamla too called on Jack and those who had joined the ILP to "come home and bring the family".
The issue in this election is really about loyalty. On the one hand it is loyalty to a party whose vision of equality, justice, freedom and democracy has never changed. It is part of a progressive government focused on people and development. On the other, it is loyalty to an MP who has been a benefactor to many.
The dilemma that faces members of the UNC who put Jack in office in 2007 and 2010 is whether to stay in government and support their party or switch loyalty to a man who now appears to be contradicting all he he stood for as a UNC MP and chairman of the UNC. Jack, it seems, is no longer a builder and a believer.
But it goes beyond that. Loyalty to the former MP means opposition to the UNC and the government. It means creating a political space for a third party that would serve to divide the votes in future elections. It is an electoral formula aimed at toppling the PP government. And Jack know that because he had always stated that T&T has no room for a third party and that the UNC was the ideal party for the country.
Now he and the ILP have become agents of change that threaten the foundations of the state and the elected government.
Jack's pronouncements that he plans a vigorous campaign in certain constituencies, notably Tabaquite, sends a signal that he is using his party to settle personal vendettas. How does that solve national problems? How is that fair to people?
There is too much at stake and there are too many unanswered questions from the ILP team; the ones raised are merely the tip of the iceberg. Taking all these into consideration I would support Khadijah Ameen.
She has experience, is young and enthusiastic, has always been loyal to the UNC and has pledged to serve the people of Chaguanas West faithfully. With a strong and unity government and partnership supporting her, the people of Chaguanas West would be well served.
I do not have a vote in Chaguanas West. But as someone who voted to put the People's Partnership in government, I stand with my leader, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, and I urge everyone in Chaguanas West to do the same and VOTE FOR KHADIJAH AMEEN on Monday.
Now is not the time to gamble with Trinidad and Tobago's political future. JYOTI fully endorses Khadijah as the only candidate who can ensure continuity in the two remaining years of the mandate of the People's Partnership.
CAUTION: The YouTube video below has offensive comment. It contains comments from JAILAL KISSSOON who spoke on a political platform of the ILP this week: