This was one of two situations which slightly disrupted the otherwise smooth running of events on Nomination Day yesterday. In the other incident, a United National Congress candidate had to prove he did not have dual citizenship after rumours began spreading that he did.
The ILP was hoping to put forward 29 candidates for the September 7 general elections, but due to Borrell’s rejection only 28 were able to file nomination papers to become eligible to contest the election.
But the party is claiming that the returning officer for the constituency of Tabaquite Carol Dyal, who also serves as the chief executive officer of the Couva/Tabaquite/Talparo Regional Corporation (CTTRC), breached Borrell’s constitutional rights by through her action and plans to challenge the decision.
Party member Sunil Ramjitsingh, who successfully filed his papers, said last night that they were in the process of drafting a letter to send to the Chief Elections Officer on the matter.
Earlier in a press release, ILP leader Jack Warner said they would also be formally lodging their objections against Dyal and her action.
Warner said Dyal refused to accept the nomination papers of Borrell, who turned up at the EBC office at the CTTRC, alongside the party’s general secretary Indra Maraj, his elections agent Sandy Himraj and a Justice of the Peace around 2.45 pm, some 15 minutes before the deadline for nomination.
Warner said Dyal was informed that Borrell was on his way and would arrive in the building shortly. He said the ILP officials were allowed entry to the returning officers’ office and Dyal began the process of scrutinising the documents well before the 3 pm deadline. He said Borrell arrived in Dyal’s office at 2.57 pm, but Dyal said by her time it was 3.04 pm and stopped the process.
“The ILP is not surprised by the discrimination and bias displayed by Mrs Dyal, as her conduct and competence as CEO of the CTTRC have been brought under heavy scrutiny by the ILP’s two aldermen in the CTTRC—Aldermen Sunil Ramjitsingh and Beeran Rambaran—over the last 21 months,” Warner charged.
He said Ramjitsingh and Rambaran have been querying the management of the administration of the CTTRC, of which Dyal is the chief accounting officer, adding that scrutiny may have sparked yesterday’s action.
“It should also be noted that the two ILP Aldermen caused the Ministry of Local Government to block the CEO, Mrs Dyal, other members of administration and other members of council from holding a $300,000 retreat in Tobago earlier this year—the second such attempt in less than ten months which would have brought the total spent on retreats to over half a million dollars,” he said.
“Under these circumstances, the ILP is not surprised at Mrs Dyal’s display of bias and breaching of the constitutional rights of Mr Borrell.
“The ILP will be exploring all of our legal options in this matter, starting with the laying of a formal complaint with Elections and Boundaries Commission.”