John Saldivar’s public embrace of Patrick Faber as the new leader was seen via a press conference this morning at the party’s headquarters. The 75-minute event saw Faber speaking on the need to unite if the UDP is to regain its status as a formidable opposition. After months of internal squabbles and public bashing on social and mainstream media the two men vowed to move forward in unity. According to Faber there was a meeting held between the two and their respective supporters which resulted in today’s gathering.
Patrick Faber, Leader of the Opposition: “Saldivar and I when we discussed as well made no request in fact it was the opposite. We agreed from the onset that he would not occupy any position in the party, that we would not have to give him any senior position as some of the media houses have reported. That in fact what we were trying to do is say to all our colleagues, all, that they’re important. You know when we actually got down to brass tax we found out that many of the colleagues were saying that ‘I don’t even want to run again. I just want to make sure that my contributions are heard within the party, that I am able to get out there and create influence where I can and help in the work of the party and do so comfortably knowing that my party has not abandoned me and not kicked me to the curb.’ And that’s the next myth or erroneous statement that I must correct, that there was some promise on the part of the party to not have any of the former standard bearers be challenged when the caretaker conventions come up or when the standard bearer conventions come up. Again I repeat that is not how the UDP works. Nobody was promised a free ride. Nobody was offered any fat, cushy position. No exchange of money, I’ve heard that one too this party doesn’t have those kinds of monies and certainly this leader does not. There were expressions of concerns that those who were not part of the Caucus for Change did not know of our efforts to unify the party and it is because of that that I agreed to hold a meeting of all our former candidates and we did so I believe it was on Tuesday evening.”