The ruling Democratic Labour Party (DLP) is in the dark about who will represent it in a seat the party has held since 1958.
Member of Parliament for St John Mara Thompson, the widow of former Prime Minister David Thompson, is yet to assure the DLP of her candidature for the party in the rural stronghold.
Amid increasing calls for clarity, Thompson remains mum on the issue and the DLP has said it was yet to get an answer on whether the St John MP and mother of three, intended to contest the next general election, constitutionally due next year.
DLP General Secretary George Pilgrim told Barbados TODAY that only Thompson knew the answer to the question of her return and at the moment, the party had no official word on her intentions.
“The only body who could make that decision is Mara. She is the only body who could make that decision about returning. At the moment, there is nothing official that has come to us,” Pilgrim pointed out.
He, however, stressed the party was working assiduously to tie up loose ends as the general election nears.
The St John seat was won by David Thompson in 1987 following the death of Errol Barrow who had won it in every election since 1958. Thompson who became Prime Minister in 2008 held the rural constituency until his death in 2010. In a 2011 by-election, his widow Mara took over the rural riding in a landslide victory. She retained it in the 2013 general election.
Two days ago, political scientist Peter Wickham called on the St John MP to clear the air, noting that rumours continued to swirl around her candidacy.
Wickham argued that Thompson owed it to the people of St John not to leave them hanging.
His comment came on the same day that Minister of Culture and Member of Parliament for Christ Church West Central Stephen Lashley took to social media to deny he was the author of a letter which was purportedly sent to Prime Minister Freundel Stuart, expressing interest representing the DLP in St John.
“We have a right to know as a public whether or not Mara Thompson is running again, and I don’t know how we could let go of that in the public domain.
“We are looking at a general election that is due by the very latest May next year and I think that the people of St John have a right to know whether or not she is running again,” he insisted.
Wickham said a statement from either Thompson or the party’s leadership would put rest any notion of an internal scramble for the DLP stronghold.
The Caribbean Development Research Services pollster also contended that the ruling party was displaying a degree of arrogance by failing to name its full slate of candidates with just mere months to go.
However, the DLP General Secretary said his party’s timelines would not be dictated by outsiders and the party would reveal its candidates only when it was ready to do so.
“We do not discuss the election of candidates at any time outside of the party. It is a very in-house process. The party will treat to this issue at the appropriate time in the appropriate manner,” he added. [email protected].