Fri | Aug 18, 2017

#PNPelections: It's a difficult race to call, says Blythe

Published:Saturday | September 17, 2016 | 9:16 PM
In photo: Dr Karl Blythe (left) and the vice-presidential candidates he has endorsed: Dr Wykeham McNeill (top right), Lisa Hanna (centre) and Dr Fenton Ferguson.
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Jovan Johnson, Staff Reporter

In silence, Dr Karl Blythe walked into the National Arena this afternoon to vote in the People's National Party (PNP) presidential elections where he's challenging the incumbent Portia Simpson Miller.

His entrance contrasted sharply with Simpson Miller's who entered with chants and dozens of supporters flocking her.

Not bothered by the reception, Blythe went on to declare that the race against Simpson Miller will be "difficult" to call.

That belies, expectations however, as Simpson Miller is widely considered to be unbeatable especially against a man she beat to the presidency in 2006.

"They (delegates) are simply telling you the vice president they're voting for. You don't see them linking up with a presidential candidate. My point is, it's a difficult race to call," Blythe explained.

"I like what I see on the ground."

About 3,500 delegates are voting in the elections in which four vice presidents will also be elected.

Blythe has campaigned on a message of 'renewal' arguing that the leadership of the PNP must change following the party's February general election defeat.

"What a day that would be if I cross the 50.1 margin," he said, noting that the delegates should use today to send a "statement" to Simpson Miller that it's time to go.

Simpson Miller, meanwhile has said she has " unfinished business" to do as party president.

The polls closed at three o'clock and results are expected as early as 5 o'clock.

Director of Elections, Orrette Fisher, whose office is overseeing the polls, said the process has been smooth so far.