MANDEVILLE, Manchester: FORMER MANDEVILLE Mayor Cecil Charlton is
once again teasing the parish's political watchers who have been waiting
for him to officially announce his switch to the National Democratic
Mr. Charlton has been voicing displeasure with the Jamaica Labour Party
(JLP), of which he is still a member, since the last Local Government
election. On Friday, he directly addressed the leadership style of JLP
leader Edward Seaga, telling The Gleaner that Mr. Seaga "needs people
around him who are not afraid to tell him when he is wrong".
"I am not going to say you are right when in my heart I know you are
wrong," said Mr. Charlton. "Eddie Seaga or anyone else is not going to make
me open my mouth if I do not want, only my dentist can tell me when to open
Mr. Charlton, who has served Local Government for more than 45 years and
was given an award by the Manchester Cultural Development Commission for
his service to the parish last year, indicated that he no longer considered
Mr. Seaga a credible leader.
According to him, Director of Elections Danville Walker was lambasted by
Mr. Seaga at every opportunity he got, yet it was the same Mr. Walker the
JLP and in particular Mr. Seaga called on to oversee the Audley Shaw versus
Pearnell Charles contest for party. This, said Mr. Charlton "shows the
inconsistency of the party for how could you condemn a man to the hilt as
the worst man on earth, then call on him to manage your affair". In another
swipe at the JLP leader, Mr. Charlton said a leader must be strong in his
conviction and leave himself open to be corrected and criticised for in the
end he will benefit and he does not see Mr. Seaga as that type of leader.
Asked if he will be running as a candidate for the NDM in the next
election, Mr. Charlton smiled and said the JLP is not going anywhere and
the PNP leaders are destroying the country, and "my relationship with the
NDM could not be better".