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Energy Minister Franklyn Khan at last night's PNM public meeting in La Brea.

Gail Alexander

Many blunders made in the last week of an election can cost a party an election so PNM supporters need to go out and vote on Monday because they can’t vote on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, PNM Energy Minister Franklin has warned.

Speaking at last night’s PNM La Brea meeting, Khan said he thinks the PNM is “in front” for elections, but he urged supporters not to “go out and play reckless. Don’t say anything that could hurt our chances of victory.”

“This election campaign is a different one – no mass meetings, it’s a social media and mass media campaign. Walkabouts are limited to 10. It won’t have any final rally at Eddie Hart grounds on. It hurts, but that’s due to the COVID pandemic.”

“But one reality that can’t be changed is that you can’t vote on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube. So on election day, get up, take your maxi, or taxi, or PNM transport, join the (polling station) line and vote for PNM – that’s the only way to win,” he said.

Khan detailed the PNM’s achievements and future goals in the energy sector.

He said the production forecast is looking better. He also delivered “good news” on other aspects. He added the Invictus drillship is returning at month-end to drill the biggest well. While the upstream side looks good, Khan said there are some challenges with the downstream sector affecting some Pt Lisas plants.

“But I think we can overcome them ahead,” he added.

He said if the oil price picks up (as it did slightly) and the global situation starts to move, T&T will have the template for an energy sector turnaround which will be reflected in revenues. He also paid tribute to the oil companies whom he said listened when the Prime Minister went overseas to meet with them.

La Brea candidate Steven McClatchie told La Brea voters that box drains and banditry are not careers for anyone in La Brea to turn to, so residents shouldn’t be fooled by other parties’ rhetoric that La Brea is “dying’’.

McClatchie said La Brea’s issues are jobs, infrastructure and youth development and residents are very concerned with having jobs, seeing about their families, educating children and having something for later in life. But he said there are some infrastructural problems which he wanted to fix in the next five years and the COVID-19 pandemic doesn’t add to residents’ confidence.

He said the narrative in the area was that PNM hadn’t done anything for the area and that “kept ringing”. But McClatchie said projects couldn’t be created overnight.

He noted energy projects the PNM tried to begin in the area but which were removed by the UNC.

“But I say by making the right choice on Monday, it will redound to you in the long run,” he said.

McClatchie saluted attendees at the meeting including former La Brea nominee, former Minister/PNM vice chairman Robert Le Hunte.

Point Fortin candidate Kennedy Richards Jr assured Point Fortin – being contested by several others – would remain in PNM hands. Fyzabad candidate Solange de Souza said now is the time for UNC-held Fyzabad to make its move forward.

“I make no promises – my commitment is stronger than promises,” she pledged.