Tue | Jul 17, 2018

Peter's disciples - President-in-waiting 'The Rock' on which they expect the PNP to stand

Published:Sunday | February 12, 2017 | 12:00 AMEdmond Campbell
Veteran Comrades (from left) Loretta Peaches, Millicent Hyde and Esmie Lewis were out to show their support for Dr Peter Phillips during his nomination last Wednesday.

They sat on a curb wall at the People's National Party (PNP) headquarters, Old Hope Road in St Andrew, last Wednesday, enjoying the pulsating reggae rhythms which energised person in the large crowd who waited patiently for the arrival of Dr Peter Phillips.

Esmie Lewis, Millicent Hyde and Loretta Peaches, all in their 70s, walked with the early founders of the party when they were teenagers and today they remain steadfast in serving the 79-year-old party.


Father figure


Lewis told The Sunday Gleaner that nothing could prevent her from attending the nomination exercise for Phillips, the man she described as a father to her.

Phillips is the sole nominee for the presidency of the PNP and will on March 26 be affirmed as the party's new president at a special delegates conference.

Refusing to allow the loud speakers to drown out her 'testimony', Lewis told the story of how a large tree fell on her house early one Friday morning, injuring her grandchild and destroying her dwelling place.

"Peter came the next morning and we carry him (grandchild) to the doctor and him (Peter) said he will stand the doctor bill," she recalled.

"Me a tell you say, that man look after mi like a daughter. The bed me a sleep on, a Peter give me. Me get a house from Food For The Poor through Peter Phillips," added Lewis, who was excited to share her closeness to the man they sometimes refer to as 'The Rock'.

"Thanks be to God - God first and Dr Peter Phillips second."

She believes Phillips will be a good president of the party, stressing that he loves "old people and him love people".


Genuine man


Hyde, a friend of Lewis, is equally strong in her support for Phillips, arguing that the sole nominee for the party's top job is a genuine man who loves old people.

Asked if she believed Phillips would make an effective president of the party, Hyde said as soon as he is given a chance the result will speak for itself.

Loretta Peaches, another Phillips loyalist, said the good that a man does will eventually be returned to him, as she argued that his ascendancy to the throne has already done much for many Jamaicans.

"He will one day become prime minister if the people are not ungrateful," declared Peaches.