Peter Phillips confirms he will run for PNP presidency
Former Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips says he intends to rely on his experience and record of service to win the support of delegates when he offers himself for president of the People’s National Party (PNP).
The announcement, which was widely expected, came 24 hours after PNP President Portia Simpson Miller told the party’s National Executive Council that she will not seek re-election when her term ends next September.
Dr Phillips joins former PNP general secretary Peter Bunting, who has already indicated that he will enter the race to select Simpson Miller’s successor.
Speaking to The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre last evening, Phillips noted that Simpson Miller and the party executive have called for a campaign free of negative attacks and signalled that he will focus on issues.
However, Phillips, who is also a former minister of transport and national security says the priority right now should be to recognise Simpson Miller’s contribution to nation building and the PNP.
Meanwhile, Fitz Jackson, who has emerged as Phillips’ campaign manager, yesterday claimed the support of the majority of the PNP’s 31 parliamentarians for Peter Phillips’ third run for the party’s presidency.
However, Ian Hayles, a key backer of the other declared contestant, Peter Bunting, says that assertion, even if true, may be of little real worth, as proved to be the case for Phillips twice before.
Sources say the PNP is expected to vote for its new leader as early as February or March.