The Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) is not about to take for granted that it has the next general election in the bag, despite the result of the latest opinion poll which puts the party a long way ahead of the governing Democratic Labour Party (DLP).
That was the word Thursday from the BLP’s first-time candidate Ralph Thorne, QC, as he kept campaigning in the Christ Church South constituency, which he wants to wrest from the DLP Member of Parliament, Minister of Health John Boyce.
The survey, conducted by Caribbean Development Research Services (CADRES) on behalf of Nation newspaper and published in the Sunday Sun, found
support for the DLP at an all-time low of 11 per cent, with Prime Minister Freundel Stuart performing even worse, at eight per cent.
Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) leader Mia Mottley was seen as the number one choice for Prime Minister with 52 per cent support, followed by former Prime Minister Owen Arthur with 18 per cent. The BLP garnered 51 per cent support.
Thorne said the result was heartening, and it showed the hard work put in by his party was paying off.
However, he said the BLP would not slow down in its attempts to regain the Government which it lost in 2008, insisting he would play his part by continuing to campaign aggressively in the constituency.
“Canvassing and campaigning is a process that makes one feel humble. The act of asking someone to repose confidence in you is very humbling. The poll just deepens my humility and my commitment to hard work,” Thorne said at the Berinda Cox fish market in Oistins, Christ Church, where he had attended a ceremony to celebrate Fishermen’s Day.
The noted attorney-at-law stopped shy of saying he was confident of victory at the polls.
However, he said constituents had been suggesting it was time for Stuart to ring the election bell, which he saw as an indication that “constituents have made up their minds and that they want to see a new dispensation.
“They want to see a new Government in place quickly,” Thorne told Barbados TODAY, even as he made it clear there would be no time for a honeymoon because of the current economic situation.
“There is a lot to be done in Barbados. We have a lot of young people who are losing hope. That will be one of the main jobs for a new Government. I expect there will be a new Government and that will be one of the main jobs running a new Government. Such a Government will have to give young people hope by addressing unemployment among the youth.”
Seemingly wary of the dangers of making it appear that victory was certain in light of the 2013 election when the BLP was confident of victory, only to be defeated by the DLP, the leading attorney appealed to Barbadians to cast their votes on Election Day.
“I hope that both parties will encourage their supporters and members to take voting seriously because political activity influences everybody’s life in major ways. The
next election is too important a juncture in our lives to miss,” he said.