Sun | Jul 15, 2018

#AngelaVsAudrey: Colours and clamour, but who can vote?

Published:Sunday | July 30, 2017 | 11:35 AM
Police constable Egbert Wright and Margo Warren assisting Veronica Steele to the polling station - Jermaine Barnaby photo

Syranno Baines, Gleaner Writer

There was no holding back of endorsements at 10 o'clock this morning when People's National Party (PNP) General Secretary Julian Robinson declared the polls open for the section of the proposed candidate for St Andrew South West who will replace Portia Simpson Miller.

From her wheelchair, clad in a bright yellow t-shirt, 81-year-old Veronica Steele declared her unwavering support for PNP Vice President  Angela Brown Burke.

IN PHOTO: Angela Brown Burke is greeted by a supporter as she arrives at the voting centre in St Andrew South West

Brown Burke, the Norman Gardens councillor endorsed by Simpson Miller, is challenging the Payne Land Division Councillor Audrey Smith Facey.

"I'm originally from St Ann like Angela. She's a straight forward and strict woman just like my late older sister, who named Portia," said Steele, an amputee.

In contrast, 65 year-old Milton Smith pronounced his loyalty to Smith-Facey and he believes 'home town' victory is imminent.

"Audrey for life. I don't know of Angela 'bout these parts. Don't let this heap a yellow fool you, how much of them can vote?" Smith questioned.

Outside the Caribbean Palm voting centre, scores of vehicles lined Spanish Town Road and supporters of both candidates hurled humour at each other.

​IN PHOTO: Audrey Smith Facey supporter Damion Crawford engages Angela Brown Burke followers at voting centre in St Andrew South West.

Rohan Johnson, 43, said while he grew up admiring retired MP Simpson Miller, he has sided with the "backbencher", Smith Facey.

"She's there for the people just like Portia. And Portia too should remember she was a backbencher before she was  elevated to prime minister. Overall is unity still, we just want the day to past and we look forward to taking back the country."