PNP should invest in Crawford

PNP should invest in Crawford

Monday, September 21, 2020

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Dear Editor,

The People's National Party (PNP) lost 11 seats in the February 2016 General Election and now 17 in the recently held September 2020 General Election. It has lost more seats in this period than the 2002-2007 election cycle, in which it lost 22 seats.

The PNP will clearly have to choose a popular leader, a young leader, to energise its base to at least come out to vote.

Michael Manley and Norman Manley took over the party at age 44, which is still the record for the youngest leader in that party.

Bruce Golding, in 2011, decided that rebuilding the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) into a winning machine had to be done by a youngster and called Andrew Holness, 39.

The PNP needs to start thinking of the future by picking a young leader to bring them out of the wilderness, which will take time. Peter Bunting, Mark Golding, Phillip Paulwell, Norman Horne, and some other names have an issue with age, and also energy . It isn't wise to pick someone over 50 to rebuild a party so far away from a win.

The person who should take over right now is 39-year-old Damion Crawford . He's the only Comrade who can boast about increasing the number of votes in any seat he's in. In 2011 he received 9,634 votes in St Andrew East Rural. He added 1,589 votes to his fellow Comrade Mikael Phillips, who had received 8,045 votes in the 2007 General Election. In 2019 he received 9,670 votes in Portland Eastern, so he added 1,064 votes to his fellow Comrade Dr Lynvale Bloomfield, who had received 8,606 votes in the 2016 General Election.

He proved himself in the 2018 PNP vice-presidents' race by becoming the youngest vice-president ever, outside of P J Patterson, who was at age 33 in 1969 when he was elected as a vice-president.

The PNP should invest in Damion Crawford. It can try to work on his flaws. He can grow as party leader, much like Andrew Holness, the current leader of the JLP.

Teddylee Gray

Ocho Rios, St Ann

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