stabroek news, march 24

Sherod Duncan, Patricia Chase-Green and Oscar Clarke are the names being tossed around as likely contenders for Mayor and Deputy of Georgetown, when the APNU+AFC-heavy council sits to elect the chief citizen.

Sources say that the race for the next mayor would be between newcomer Duncan and veteran Chase-Green.  Clarke’s name has also been floated.

A source close to the party confirmed that Duncan’s name has been mentioned to be nominated as the mayoral candidate. The sources explained that the party is looking at the fact that Duncan is  young and a newcomer to municipal affairs.

Sherod Duncan
Sherod Duncan

Meanwhile, Duncan, Clarke and Alfred Mentore winner of Constituency Four have all said that if the council had the confidence to elect them to the position they would accept it. Duncan was bold enough to say that he has an interest in becoming the next mayor of the city.

Duncan told Stabroek News that if he was elected mayor he is ready to work on partnerships and will work with those persons who weren’t elected but have workable ideas.

Mentore told Stabroek News his party had not identified the 11 persons who will fill the Proportional Representation seats as yet. Because of this, he explained, nominating the next mayor would be premature.

Efforts to contact Chase-Green were futile.

Roopnarine Persaud, winner of Constituency Seven, said he had not heard anything as to who would be nominated to be elected by the council as mayor. He stated that the only person he knew who had been public about taking up the position was Chase-Green.

He told Stabroek News that the position deserves a person who has a proven record in management and is not afraid to speak for the rights of citizens.

Sherod Duncan
Sherod Duncan

The APNU+AFC coalition won 25 of the 30 seats that make up the Georgetown City Council in the local government elections contested on Friday, which saw less than 50% of registered voters casting their ballots countrywide.

Of these 25 seats, 11 were won through Proportional Representation and 14 were won by the coalition’s First-Past-The-Post candidates. The coalition won the First-Past-The-Post seat in every constituency it contested.

Meanwhile, this newspaper understands that the next mayor can be elected by councillors casting secret ballots or by open voting; a system where councillors would vote by raising their hands. A decision would have to be taken before the meeting on whether the vote would be open or by secret ballot. Insiders say a secret ballot would favour Duncan. Some within and without APNU+AFC say that neither Chase-Green nor Clarke should be considered given their long association with the discredited 1994 council.

With Gecom officially publishing the results of the polls on its website on Tuesday, the new councillors are expected to be sworn in next week.