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Candidates for deputy leader not at fault, says Franklin

Published:Sunday | November 18, 2012 | 11:43 PM

Livern Barrett, Gleaner Writer

General secretary of the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) Aundre Franklin has absolved the candidates vying for deputy leader positions of blame for the breach surrounding their election.

Instead Franklin, who was addressing the opening session of the JLP's annual conference this morning, blamed the controversy on "glitches" in the nomination process.

His comments follow an aborted court action by JLP member Everald Warmington who sought to block the election of three of the four incumbent deputy leaders, who are all seeking re-election.

Warmington initiated the court action claiming that the three; Audley Shaw, Dr Christopher Tufton and Desmond McKenzie, were not properly nominated because it was not done within the 30-day period set out in the JLP's constitution.

Franklin told delegates gathered at the Jamaica Conference Centre in downtown Kingston that up to this morning, he had only received nominations from party leader Andrew Holness and deputy leader James Robertson.

Both were returned unopposed.

"We don't need to go to any court... And we don't need to quarrel," Franklin said to loud applause. "Don't follow the media. There is no issue here," he added.

The JLP general secretary said the issues surrounding the nomination of the three senior members should not distract from the work they have done in their area councils.

Franklin said he expects that they will be returned when the party's central executive committee meets in two weeks.