I Voting for Valley...

I've seen and heard this alot over the past few weeks with some people coming outright now ezpecially as PM Mr. Dr. Manning announced the election date. I have no problem with people announcing their intention. I find it very useful information. I also think it good that his constituents are supportive of him. I think that Manning should listen to them. No one else was nominated for the seat. So why wouldn't you want Mr. Valley?

The Express has a leading headline today that says the PM want Ms. Universe. It seems weird to me that a man who wants to be a pastor (and drive an articulated bus) would want to highlight someone who actively persued and had a child out of wedlock. Completely againts the rules of organised religion. Then again the PM understands that people make mistakes and can be forgiven. He can simply overlook this and see that Ms. Universe has something to offer the country.

Former Miss Universe tipped for Valley's seat
Anna Ramdass aramdass@trinidadexpress.com
Monday, October 1st 2007

Former Miss Universe Wendy FitzwilliamPROSPECTIVE PNM CANDIDATE: Former Miss Universe Wendy Fitzwilliam
Former Miss Universe Wendy Fitzwilliam has been tipped as one of the prospective candidates to replace Diego Martin Central MP Ken Valley.

Fitzwilliam, who is currently the Vice President/General manager of Evolving Technologies and Enterprise Development Company Ltd (E-teck) might be one of the "new faces" Prime Minister Patrick Manning spoke about at a PNM political meeting in St Augustine last Friday, it was learned yesterday..

If Fitzwilliam decides to fulfil any political aspirations, the election battle will become a Queen versus Queen scenario as former Miss Trinidad and Tobago representative for Miss Universe Nicole Dyer is an active member of the Congress of the People (COP) and also their public relations officer. It will soon be revealed whether Dyer will contest any political seat when the COP presents its slate of candidates.

Fitzwilliam won the Miss Universe Pageant in 1998 and later became involved in social work. She was honoured by the United Nations with the title UNAIDS goodwill Ambassador, a result of her commitment to fighting HIV/AIDS.

She also a holds a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degree from the University of the West Indies and was said to have been doing a remarkable job at E-teck-a Government company mandated to develop Trinidad's non-energy sector through the creation of new industry.

Speculation of Fitzwilliam's candidacy is high in the political arena, "I have heard about it, and if it is true then it will be very interesting," Dyer told the Express yesterday.

The PNM screening committee-blanked Valley, the current MP for Diego Martin and a call for new candidates was made.

Valley was screened as the lone candidate for Diego Martin Central last Thursday at Balisier House, Port of Spain but, was given the boot one day later-on Friday, the day Manning announced that General Elections will be held on November 5.

That very evening Manning told a massive crowd at St Augustine that the PNM will be presenting new faces and future leaders of Trinidad when the party presents its slate of candidates at Woodford Square, Port of Spain this Saturday.

Members of the Diego Martin Central Executive have maintained their staunch devotion and support to Valley and were not surrendering to any "new face" for that constituency seat.

Sources told the Express that Valley who has been fighting for a second chance since a PNM poll rated him as a low performing MP will continue to battle Manning who is hell bent on shaking up and changing the party for the elections.

The party was non committal on Fitzwilliam's candidacy.

"Right now it's an internal process going on and we have no official position in that regard," said PNM's Public Relations Officer Jerry Narace.

"It's news to me" said Valley when told by the Express about Fitzwilliam's possible candidacy.

Valley said he had no comment to make on being blanked by the screening committee.

The Express tried in vain to contact Fitzwilliam yesterday.

Meanwhile Valley reacted yesterday and I definitely heard a quiver in his voice. He's upset. Very Upset.

Screening a sham, says Valley
Juhel Browne jbrowne@trinidadexpress.com
Monday, October 1st 2007

MP Ken ValleyGod's plan: Kenneth Valley
Trade and Industry Minister Kenneth Valley has described his screening as the unopposed nominee for Diego Martin Central by the ruling's party's screening committee last Thursday was "a sham."

The PNM Diego Martin Central constituency executive was instructed by Prime Minister Patrick Manning, in his capacity as the party's political leader to find another nominee after Valley, the area's MP and PNM deputy political leader, was screened on Thursday.

His screening had been postponed for two weeks after he was referred to the PNM's disciplinary committee which eventually cleared him for screening.

"The screening was a sham and the question is whether my constituency does not have a legitimate right to have me as its candidate," Valley said in an interview with the Express yesterday.

He said that only the members of the PNM Diego Martin Central constituency executive asked him any questions during Thursday's screening as is allowed in the party's constitution.

"Not one member of the screening committee asked me any questions," Valley said .

He said the constituency executive's chairman said it only received Manning's instructions to find a new nominee yesterday morning, after reports on television on Saturday night and in the newspapers yesterday that he had been rejected by the committee.

"It seems the newspapers and the television stations were informed before the constituency," Valley said.

He said the constituency executive chairman told him that another of the PNM's deputy political leaders, Culture and Gender Affairs Minister Joan Yuille-Williams will be meeting them today at 6 pm.

Valley said he and his constituency held a church service yesterday morning and he "was at peace."

"When you see madness happening you try to see what is God's plan," he said.

Valley, the longstanding high profile PNM MP who has served twice as a Government Minister within the last 26 years said the controversy surrounding his screening would have repercussions beyond his constituency in the upcoming General Election.

"Somebody seems to have a desire to have the PNM lose the election and I would just stand by and watch. Of course, the party is not a man," Valley said.

He said he has not thrown in the towel and will continue to fight to become the PNM candidate for the Diego Martin Central for the sixth time.

"I will test all the processes of the party," Valley said.

He said the constituency executive had already informed him that they intend ed to again recommend him as its nominee for Diego Martin Central, despite Manning's instructions.

"As they have told me, they are going back with their candidate. It is up to the central executive. If the internal processes of the party will not work, the county will have to take note of what is happening," Valley said.

The ongoing controversy surrounding Valley's screening has led some to conclude that Manning just does not want him to contest the upcoming General Election.

On Friday, Manning said in response to a question from the Express that he had "no issue" with Valley and the issue merely involved an adherence to the PNM's screening process

"So at every stage there is an opportunity to do something different from what was done before," Manning said .

The PNM's constitution, however, gives the party's political leader a veto vote with regard to nominees recommended by any constituency executive.

Valley along with everyone else in the party is well aware that what the PM wants he gets...

PNM leader has veto
Monday, October 1st 2007

The PNM's constitution gives the political leader a veto vote with regard to the screening of nominees.

The document, which is available on the PNM's website, outlines the screening process as follows:

The nominees selected by Party Groups, and Constituency Youth Leagues shall appear as summoned before the Political Leader who shall be assisted by a - Screening Committee.

The Political Leader and the Screening Committee shall interview the nominees in consultation with the Constituency Executive or Executives concerned, which shall meet separately, before the meeting with the Screening Committee, to assess the Party Groups and Constituency Youth League nominee and determine which (if any) of the nominees will, in their opinion, be most acceptable.

The Political Leader shall not be bound to accept the recommendation of the Constituency Executive.

If, after consultation with the Screening Committee, the Political Leader considers the Executive's recommendation unsatisfactory, he may require the Executive to make a new nomination.

The Screening Committee shall comprise the following Officers of the Movement:

The Political Leader-Chairman

The Party's Chairman-Vice Chairman

The Deputy Political Leaders-Members

The Party's Vice Chairman-Member

The Lady Vice Chairman-Member

The General Secretary-Member

The Elections Officer-Member

The Public Relations Officer-Member

The Party Operations Officer-Member

The Political Leader, in consultation with the Screening Committee, shall make written recommendations to the Central Executive whose decision shall be final.

Democracy in action...

I just hope that all who say they voting for Valley mean it. It makes no sense to clamour for a representative and subsequently support a crapaud when given that option.

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