Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Last stand


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TRINBAGONIANS are today weighing their options on who to support after both political parties held their final campaign rallies yesterday to woo voters for tomorrow’s general election.The mood in the twin-island republic last night was one filled with excitement.Prime Minister Patrick Manning and Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar were both in a fighting mood as they lambasted each other’s programmes and promoted their own before thousands of supporters.At the People’s National Movement (PNM) rally, held in the barometer constituency of Tunapuna, a belligerent Manning said his party was poised to score its largest victory in electoral history tomorrow.He blasted the opposition People’s Coalition as a bunch of “talkers” who had failed to present any creditable ideas to take Trinidad and Tobago forward.“Do not play fast and loose with your future,” Manning urged the thousands of placard bearing, red-shirt clad supporters at the Eddie Hart Grounds in Tagarigua.A few miles away at the Aranguez Savannah, the coalition held what was dubbed as The Unity and Liberation Rally.Persad-Bissessar, dressed in a yellow skirt and blouse, walked to the podium to Mariah Carey’s rendition of I’ll be there and told the people that her cup “runneth over” from seeing the size of the crowd.The thousands present hung on to her every word and chanted her name at times as she attacked Manning and the PNM policies and promised that her party would fix the mess.She spelt out the party’s plans looking specifically at education and security.To thunderous applause, she also announced that should she become prime minister, the first prize for major competitions in Carnival, such as Soca Monarch, Chutney Monarch and Panorama would be increased to TT$2 million (BDS$660 000).This year, the first prize for the Chutney Soca Monarch was $100 000, and the first prize for the Soca Monarch was$600 000.On security she said citizens had a right to feel safe in their homes and the coalition planned to improve the conditions of the police, and implement policies to address the crime wave and fear gripping the country. According to the Elections and Boundaries Commission more than one million voters are eligible to cast their ballots tomorrow.


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