The PPP continues to play its Local Government Election strategy close to its chest so that even though the March 18, 2016 date has been given the party is yet to begin the process of consideration for mayoral candidates.
At the party’s weekly press briefing on Monday, General Secretary Clement Rohee told Stabroek News that the Georgetown councillors and mayoral candidates have not been identified as yet.
He said that he would be unable at this stage to say when the party will make a decision on candidates and when the names and portfolios would be ventilated.
Rohee said the party will be engaging in three county conferences over the course of the next two weeks.
In addition to the mid-congressional conference, the party has already begun groundwork that consists of working alongside party members, civic components and civil groups at the Neighbour-hood Democratic Council level. The party’s general secretary said that on the ground, the party is engaging groups to find common ground and common causes and to build on the support of those commonalities.
“We are on the ground all the time; we are not on the ground only for elections,” Rohee stated, adding that the PPP has party groups in almost every village across the country. Rohee said that the party groups work alongside district workers who then work alongside regional communities. He spoke about the party mechanisms that allow for analysis of “social composition” from the ground up.
He echoed sentiments expressed by former president Donald Ramotar that the PPP will likely be contesting the LGE in all constituencies and municipalities. This newspaper understands that since the PPP/C’s defeat at the General Elections last May, it immediately began the groundwork for LGE as it is determined to win a majority of the municipalities.
The party has been sending representatives across the country to pair with community leaders and has been interfacing with residents in their preparations.
Rohee told Stabroek News that the views of the party were not necessarily an us versus them position with the us being the PPP, additional smaller parties and civil groups versus the APNU+AFC. He said that the fact that the APNU and AFC will once again be coalescing for the LGE plays into a scenario that is more reflective of them versus the rest of the contenders.Party Secretary Zulficar Mustapha stated that there are still outstanding issues with the Guyana Elections Commission. He said the party was still not satisfied with Gecom’s declaration of municipal boundaries noting that so far the party has received an original demarcation and a revised demarcation map.
Over the weekend, Minister of Communities Ronald Bulkan revealed that March 18, will be the date for LGE.
Elections point person for APNU, Amna Ally told Stabroek News that the APNU and AFC will once again come together to contest LGEs together. However General Sec-retary of the Alliance For Change (AFC) David Patterson told Stabroek News that a decision is yet to be made.