Sun | Sep 22, 2019

UPDATE: Phillips meets with Bunting, to hold press conference Wednesday

Published:Tuesday | September 10, 2019 | 3:46 PM
Opposition Leader Dr Peter Phillips and his defeated challenger Peter Bunting shake hands on arrival at Gordon House this afternoon. At left is his campaign manager Natalie Neita and at right PNP General Secretary Julian Robinson - Rudolph Brown photo.

Returned president of the People's National Party (PNP) Dr Peter Phillips is to hold a press conference on Wednesday following private talks today with his defeated challenger Peter Bunting.

The talks were held at an undisclosed location.

Later, on arrival at Gordon House for the Parliamentary sitting, they greeted each other in the presence of members of the media.

However, they went inside the chamber without speaking with reporters.

The meeting came amid criticisms about the tone and content of Phillips' victory speech last Saturday when he beat Bunting by 76 votes in the high-stakes presidential election at Kingston's National Arena.

It also coincided with Bunting's resignation from Phillips' shadow cabinet as the spokesperson on industry, commerce and competitiveness.

Bunting's campaign chairman Mark Golding who was also the spokesperson on finance and campaign manager Dr Dayton Campbell, the health spokesperson, have resigned too.

Phillips said, he has, however, asked all shadow ministers to remain in place and continue to monitor their assigned portfolios until he reorganises the Opposition's Council of Spokespersons after the party’s annual conference ends on September 22.

In April, the Opposition Leader first indicated his intention to restructure the shadow cabinet at a meeting of the party's National Executive Council.

Meanwhile, Campbell this morning told RJR News that he was very encouraged by Phillips' early decision to meet with Bunting.

Campbell also said he was hopeful that the discussions will be productive.

Political commentators have said it is crucial that Phillips engages Bunting and his key supporters given the narrow margin of the election win equal to roughly one per cent of the just over 2, 778 delegates who voted.

We want to hear from you! Send us a message on WhatsApp at 1-876-499-0169, email us at editors@gleanerjm.com or onlinefeedback@gleanerjm.com.