UNC Candidate Richard Sukdeo after casting his ballot at the Cunupia High School yesterday.

The local government bye-election in Cunupia yesterday to elect a representative to replace former councillor Vandana Mohit went off without a hitch.

This according to voters and candidates for both the UNC and the PNM.

Voters began arriving as soon as the polls opened at 6 am at the three polling stations- the Cunupia High School, the Cunupia Primary School and the Jerningham Junction Primary School.

Among those to cast their vote, yesterday was 58-year-old Nazim Mohammed.

He told reporters it was the first time in his life he had been able to vote. Mohammed, who uses a wheelchair, said no one had ever offered to take him to vote before and so he was happy at having the chance to exercise his franchise.

Wheelchair  bound  Nazim Mohammed, 58, makes his way into the Jerningham Government school to vote for the very first time in his life.

PNM candidate Rasheed Ali was also out early. He arrived at the Jerningham Junction Primary School at 8 am to cast his vote.

Ali said the voting process was smooth and without incident.

He told Guardian Media he was very confident of his chances in securing the seat.

He outlined several issues facing the community that he said he intended to fix once he was elected.

He said residents also complained about vacant, overgrown lots, poor drainage, bad roads and ‘poor people.’

When asked how he would handle those issues with limited funding, Ali said he would tackle that issue if he is elected.

PNM  candidate for cunupia Rasheed “patos” Ali emerges from the voting station at the Jerningham Government School with his wife Sheriza Ali and campaing manager Lennox Rattansing after voting yesterday.

His opponent, UNC candidate Richard Sukdeo arrived around 9 am to cast his vote.

Sukdeo had no complaints and also expressed confidence that he would be able to retain the seat for the UNC.

As for his plans, if he is elected, Sukdeo said he wants to create job opportunities in the community.

He said during his campaigning, residents told him they want their basic needs met by the Chaguanas Borough Corporation.

Sukdeo said the residents were also concerned for their safety. He said he intends to start WhatsApp crime groups so the community can play a role in keeping themselves safe.