General Secretary of the People’s National Party (PNP), Dr Dayton Campbell has claimed that sources have indicated that there is a plan by the Government to again postpone the local government election that is due by February 28.
It has been postponed at least three times since 2020, when it should have been held. The election, which, in law, is to be held every four years, was last held in 2016.
Campbell, who was speaking Monday during a press conference at the PNP’s Old Hope Road headquarters in St Andrew, said the plan is to postpone the election until after the Budget Debate (in March) with a view to “continue this tour of making wild promises to the people of Jamaica”.
He said the PNP was ready and will take control of a majority of the municipal corporations after the polls.
“We continue to make our preparations; we have been doing our audits to make sure that our organisation within the divisions is fine-tuned, we have been doing our polling, and at this time, the People’s National Party is polling ahead in 12 of the 14 municipal corporations,” Campbell said.
With the governing Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) that currently controls the majority of the municipal corporations stating on Sunday that its own internal polling shows that it will be retaining that majority, Campbell said:
“I’ve heard the assertions from the prime minister and the Jamaica Labour Party saying otherwise, but the truth is that if they were so confident, they would have announced an election. A party that is confident of winning an election doesn’t continue to postpone it serially”.
Campbell urged the government not to trample on the democratic process “that we fought hard for as a country, and announce the (date for) the local government election”.
He shared that the party has 227 of 228 candidates in place. The lone vacancy is in the Friendship Division in the Westmoreland Municipal Corporation, which arose after the sudden death of Maxine Salabie earlier this month. She had replaced Tyrone Guthrie, who was charged with the alleged abduction and rape of a 16-year-old girl in October 2023.
Campbell said the “misery index” in the country is high, and the complaints are growing.
“We’re confident that the people of Jamaica are calling for a change, and we’re confident that that change begins with the local government election, which, when they call it, we will win it,” he declared.