Mon | Feb 24, 2020

‘Writing on the wall’ as Vaz team upbeat

Published:Monday | March 11, 2019 | 12:53 AMGareth Davis Sr/Gleaner Writer

MANCHIONEAL, Portland:

West Portland Member of Parliament Daryl Vaz has thrown cold water on the results of an internal poll by the People’s National Party (PNP) showing its prospective candidate, Damion Crawford, leading the Jamaica Labour Party’s (JLP) standard-bearer, Ann-Marie Vaz, weeks ahead of the April 4 by-election in East Portland.

The poll, conducted by the Caribbean Research Development Services Inc, which was commissioned by the PNP, placed Crawford, with 28 per cent support, in a statistical dead heat with Vaz (25 per cent). The PNP, according to the poll, has 53 per cent support in East Portland, compared to the JLP’s 27 per cent.

The margin of error was plus or minus five per cent.

“That particular poll result is ridiculous, and it is not a true reflection of what is taking place on the ground in East Portland,” said Vaz, Ann-Marie’s husband.

“I have been living in East Portland for 16 years, and I have never seen so many young people as energised and upbeat about the JLP and its campaign. From the young at heart to the unattached and the uncommitted, the youth are appealing for change. And, of course, there are the thinkers who are crossing over from the other side,” Vaz added.

begging for change

According to the West Portland MP, 30 years of undue hardship have taken their toll on the constituents, who he said are begging for a change in leadership. The PNP has held the East Portland seat for 30 years.

Meantime, East Rural St Andrew MP Juliet Holness, who is Ann-Marie Vaz’s campaign manager, said there was a groundswell of support for the prospective candidate in the farming communities of Manchioneal and Boundbrook, as well as Port Antonio and the Rio Grande Valley.

“The writing is on the wall, and the people are calling for the JLP to effect that change in restoring the basic infrastructure, providing jobs, restoring tourism, and providing quality education,” said Holness, wife to Prime Minister Andrew Holness.

She added: “It’s all about creating a level playing field for all in this constituency so that everyone will benefit from the prosperity plan. This constituency needs quality leadership, and Mrs Vaz, who is passionate about people and their well-being, will serve with distinction.”

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