BRING IT ON! JLP’s Chin ‘excited’ to meet Bunting in South Manchester Loop Jamaica

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News Loop News

Member of Parliament (MP) for South Manchester, the Jamaica Labour Party’s (JLP) Robert Chin, has declared that his supporters are “equally motivated” in ensuring that Opposition Senator Peter Bunting does not stand a chance of winning the seat in the next General Elections that are due by September 2025.

Before those national polls are called, Chin said labourites in the constituency are ready for the upcoming Local Government Elections that are due next month, while Bunting “is just coming on the road”.

In noting that the JLP currently has control of the Grove Town and Porus divisions in South Manchester, the first-term MP said he and his team have been on the road, unlike Bunting.

“We (the JLP) have been putting in the work, serving our constituents with dignity and pride,” said Chin in a video statement last week in reaction to news that Bunting has announced his intention to contest the South Manchester seat for the People’s National Party (PNP) in the next national polls.

“I can assure that when the (local) polls are closed and the ballots are counted, I will be sending four JLP councillors to the Manchester Municipal Corporation,” declared Chin.

While some persons have described Bunting as being “power hungry” for making a bid for another seat in the House of Representatives than in Central Manchester, which has represented for quite some time, Chin said he is excited at the prospect of facing off with Bunting in the next national polls.

“There are some who are of the view that he (Bunting) should go back to Central Manchester and clean up the mess which he left there,” Chin claimed.

“Some comrades don’t want him (Bunting) here (in South Manchester). They credit him with single-handedly destroying their beloved party, and the labourites here are equally motivated to keep him out of the constituency,” he continued.

“There are some who think he (Bunting) is power hungry and he just wants to get back into the Lower House of Parliament. For me, I am excited that he is coming to South Manchester,” added Chin.

Bunting, who lost the Central Manchester constituency to then political neophyte Rhoda Crawford of the governing JLP in 2020, told comrades last Sunday in Porus that he was “reluctant” to return to competitive representational politics.

Peter Bunting

But he said he was convinced to return on the basis of his claim that the people of South Manchester deserve a better MP than Chin.

In reacting to that particular comment, Chin said his performance as a parliamentarian speaks for itself after more than three years in office.

“When the general elections are called, I would have had a track record of excellence to show to the constituency that I deserve another term to continue this great and glorious work upon which I have embarked,” said Chin without providing details of his track record.

He then continued to take aim at Bunting for his previous performance in Central Manchester while he served as MP there from 2007 to 2020.

“I heard him (Bunting) saying that the people deserve better representation, and so I am asking if it is that representation that he gave to Central Manchester why they voted him out of the constituency,” the businessman and politician quipped.

Chin was one of the many JLP candidates in the September 2020 General Election campaign who unseated their opponents in seats usually regarded as PNP bastions.

He polled 6,826 votes in trouncing educator Michael Stewart of the PNP by a margin of 890 votes. The JLP last won the seat in the 1983 snap elections that were called by then Prime Minister Edward Seaga, which were not contested by the PNP.

Similarly, the JLP’s Rhoda Crawford defeated Bunting in a seat that over the years has voted for the PNP. Crawford bagged 8,139 votes to Bunting’s 6,989, taking Central Manchester from the PNP’s palms.

That particular defeat, according to political observers, resulted in a shake-up to the future leadership prospects of Bunting in the PNP.

He was once seen as the likely successor to lead the PNP if he had retained his seat in Parliament after the 2020 polls, but with the stinging loss, he did not challenge for leadership of the party when Dr Peter Phillips resigned as the party president after the 2020 national polls.