PM not in leadership talks in Tobago

Story by CAMILLE McEACHNIE

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley

Prime Minister and leader of the People’s National Movement (PNM), Dr. Keith Rowley, says he is visiting Tobago in a private capacity this weekend, and not to hold discussions on who will be Tobago’s next Chief Secretary.

This according to a statement from the Office of the Prime Minister issued on Sunday (May 3).

“Dr. Rowley… is in Tobago on a private “stay at home” visit and has absolutely nothing to do with the Tobago House of Assembly’s issue of leadership,” the press release said.

It continued: “…contrary to media speculation (Dr. Rowley) will not be meeting with or communicating with PNM Executive of the Tobago Island Council.”

“Prime Minister Dr the Hon Keith Rowley is in Tobago on a private “stay home” visit and has absolutely nothing to do with the Tobago House of Assembly’s issue of leadership; and contrary to media speculation will not be meeting with or communicating with the PNM Executive of the Tobago Island Council.”

The Office of the Prime Minister has moved swiftly to debunk media speculation that PM Dr Rowley is in Tobago for talks on the THA leadership issue. (Image: Office of the Prime Minister)

The post of Chief Secretary remains vacant after Kelvin Charles resigned on April 29.

Charles held to his promise of leaving the post after he was defeated as the political leader of the island council by Tracy Davidson-Celestine—the former Tourism Secretary and ambassador to Costa Rica.

Since the post became vacant, Marslyn Melville-Jack—the Secretary for Community Development, Enterprise Development and Labour—has shown interest in taking up the position. She told Guardian Media she is “being led by God.”

Meanwhile, information has surfaced that Assistant Secretary in the Division of Health, Ancil Dennis, was selected to fill the post.

However, he told Guardian Media on Friday: “There is absolutely no truth to that information.”

In a press release on Saturday, Tracy Davidson-Celestine said Kelvin Charles remains a member of the THA and the Tobago Executive Council.

Citing the THA Act #40 of 1996, she said the new Chief Secretary will be chosen at a special Plenary Sitting.

The Act also provides for the current Deputy Chief Secretary, Joel Jack, to act as Chief Secretary.