PORT OF SPAIN — The word is “no”.
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar said yesterday she will not accept former minister Jack Warner, now turned interim political leader of the Independent Liberal Party, as a partner in her People’s Partnership Government.
Last Friday, Warner launched his party at a public meeting at Felicity, saying he will contest the July 29 Chaguanas West by-election and seek to join the People’s Partnership Government as a partner.
Speaking yesterday at a walkabout at Pierre Road, Chaguanas, Persad-Bissessar, when asked whether she will accept Warner in the coalition, said with a serious face: “No.”
Asked again whether there was any possibility of Warner joining the Partnership, she flatly said “No, no.”
Warner also said yesterday that his party will contest the Local Government elections later this year.
Said Persad-Bissessar: “Sure, everybody is free, it’s a free country.”
Persad-Bissessar said last Friday that Warner’s ILP was designed to bring down her government.
She had also questioned whether his party would compete against UNC candidates in the local government elections.
Asked if she was surprised by Warner’s move to contest the local government polls, Persad-Bissessar said: “In my age and my time I expect anything.”
The prime minister confidently asserted that the UNC will reclaim the Chaguanas West seat.
She said not only will her party win the seat but will also sweep the local government polls.
Persad-Bissessar said the UNC will remain focused.
Throughout his campaign, Warner has been saying that Persad-Bissessar was being misled by a cabal.
She reiterated yesterday that this was false.
“I made the point there is no cabal, there is a cabinet, I consult with my colleagues, I work with my colleagues. There is no human being who acts unilaterally and alone, every human being, and a leader especially, must listen to the voices around and then the leader takes a decision. There is no cabal,” said Persad-Bissessar.
Yesterday, a sea of yellow snaked through Pierre Road as a large contingent of government ministers accompanied UNC Chaguanas West candidate Khadijah Ameen on a walkabout. (Express)