It is the week before THA Elections and things are heating up.This weekend saw what amounted to a Blitz Krieg from the TOP. On Yellow Friday we saw several music trucks moving about the island blasting music and tshirts (many claim with $500 tucked inside) being handed out. Yesterday (Sunday, 13th January) both the PM and Opposition Leader were in Tobago supporting their various candidates. The Prime Minister, who a month ago said that the UNC was not running the TOP campaign just lending logistical support, was at Jack's side being logistical as she attended church with him, read scripture to the congregation during the ceremony and then eventually set of on a walkabout of Mason Hall, Ashworth Jack's seat in the THA and the village that Keith Rowley is from.
In the blogosphere the comments flew fast and quick, with many Tobagonians wondering online and out loud how a PM who only just recently insulted Keith Rowley for attending a religious event at the Divali Nagar, could now show up at a Full Gospel Church and participate in the service considering her Hindu Faith.....ironies, I suppose.
While in Roxborough last evening a fiery Rowley and London talked about the various missteps of both Ashworth Jack and the UNC. The audience was reminded of Reshmi, Section 34, the SoE, Jack's failure to declare assets to the Integrity Commission, the Magic Pumpkin Seed House, his use of notes at the THA debate where it was strictly forbidden to bring prepared notes, although Jack claims he was allowed to bring notes.
Apart from those two meeting there were also casual discussions on various groups and walls about 10,000 cellphones, along with food hampers and other goodies to be distributed this week to Tobagonians; the construction work taking place to hurriedly complete the Roxborough gas station so that the PP can cut a ribbon at its opening.
There were also more sober reflections from people like Francis Morean who was there in the last week and observed political meetings and casual road conversations. And has strong views on what this particular THA campaign has meant for elections culture in Tobago and who the likely victor may be by the end of this elections. Morean, careful to point out that it is still a week away; and that can be a lifetime in local politics, thinks that the PNM's lengthy and sustained ground war may win out over the TOP Blitkrieg of handouts and music trucks.
It remains to be seen which campaign style will now work for Tobagonians and whose policies (if any) they are interested in.
It's silly season in full force these next seven days.
Vote With Sense, Don't Vote Full Dotish!