Wed | Aug 16, 2017

PNP asks candidates to fund internal elections

Published:Wednesday | September 14, 2016 | 9:53 AM
PNP Deputy General Secretary, Julian Robinson, says the five candidates vying for the posts of vice-presidents and the two presidential hopefuls have accepted a request from the party for each of them to contribute 200,000 to offset the cost being charged by the ECJ.

Erica Virtue, Senior Gleaner Writer

The People’s National Party (PNP) has turned to its candidates in the election for president and vice-president to help pay the bill to conduct Saturday’s internal elections.

PNP Deputy General Secretary, Julian Robinson, says the five candidates vying for the posts of vice-presidents and the two presidential hopefuls have accepted a request from the party for each of them to contribute $200,000 to offset the cost being charged by the Electoral Commission of Jamaica (ECJ).

Robinson says it is costing the party $2.2 million to engage the ECJ to run the PNP elections on Saturday.

He says just over 3,400 delegates are eligible to vote.

Speaking at a press conference this morning the PNP's deputy general secretary said all is in place for the elections.

Robinson says because of financial constrains the bulk of the party’s resources are being used for preparation for the local government polls.

The PNP has been under heavy scrutiny arising from a campaign money scandal.

A leaked report of party treasurer Norman Horne claims that some senior party members pocketed money collected from donors in the 2016 General Election campaign.

The scandal deepened after former transport minister Dr Omar Davies publicly rejected assertions that he collected agent fees from Chinese contractors in Jamaica.

The matter is being investigated by the Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency as well as the Office of the Contractor General.

Meanwhile, the PNP deputy general secretary has sought to clarify reports that the names of delegates could not be verified.

Robinson says the names of 1,500 persons could not be verified by the ECJ because of a number of reasons including misspellings.

However, Robinson says the situation is being addressed with 1,200 names already verified.

The PNP deputy general secretary says he expected the other names to be cleared up by the end of today.