It’s convention season for the UDP. Last week Sunday the UDP hosted conventions for Cayo North East which was won by John August and another in Port Loyola which was won by Phillip Willoughby. This weekend Doctor Carla Barnett will test her mettle against Orson Elrington and Fredy Cantillano. Love News spoke to Barnett, who is a senator and the Minister of State in the Ministry of Labour about how she feels about her chances in Freetown.
Dr. Carla Barnett Contesting UDP Freetown: “It is working for the interest of the country and for the interest of the people so I don’t make a difference in terms of the kind of work that I do, I just do it in a different sphere but its public service.”
Jose Sanchez: “Politicians give promises, what is the platform for that you are running on?”
Dr. Carla Barnett Contesting UDP Freetown: “Well I have shared my platform and one of the things that I said on that and you can find it online is that I am not your usual politician meaning that I come from a different background and I realize that but I am also not somebody who makes a lot of promises, especially promises that I can’t deliver. I prefer to help people to help themselves, as I say in the platform I prefer to lend a hand than to give a hand out because I think that people are well able to deal with the issues they face on a daily basis if they are empowered to do that; so that’s my approach, that’s what I do in the areas in which I volunteer as well as the way I set out to do my work professionally, I empower people to solve their problems. My Cabinet colleague Mr. Saldivar has a way of approaching campaign and a way of organizing that many of his colleagues have learned from and so I have brought some of his people in and they have been walking and campaigning with my team so that they learn and that’s been going really very well.”
The UDP Freetown convention is this Sunday. Currently, Dr. Barnett has the support of the Minister of National Security John Saldivar. Barnett had previously lost in Freetown and now with two challengers for the convention, she believes she is ready for the challengers.
Dr. carla Barnett Contesting UDP Freetown: “A Lot of people when we talk about it, a lot people say to me that they recognized that when the election was called in 2015 I had not been on the ground very long. I put myself forward earlier in the year and within a few months the election was called so we didn’t have a lot of time on the ground to do the kind of work that we need to do to turn Freetown around and we have been working at it slowly. Many people recognize that this is now an opportunity for us to really turn it around and to build on that work that we had already started so that’s the message that I am getting, now is the time to build on the work that I have already started. I get a lot of support from the people in Freetown themselves and so I don’t have any issue with that kind of bacative in terms of people who have said that they will come out and support me on Sunday.”
Dr. Barnett is believed to have strong support from Prime Minister Dean Barrow as he chose her to be the minister of state in his Ministry of Labour.