Prime Minister Gaston Browne announced the much-anticipated date during a whistle stop for his party’s caretaker for the constituency, Dwayne George in Urlings.
Browne told a massive crowd of supporters that George is earmarked to serve in the Ministry of Finance but must first win his seat.
“I am satisfied that he has made significant progress. I have seen several individuals who subsequently wore a blue shirt stepping out in their red”, Browne said
He said the by-election is not about Dwayne George but about the constituents
“This is not about individuality; it is about advancement for the community…St Mary’s South has the momentum. Things are happening for you that have never happened before. Why vote for someone who cannot do anything for you? Do not cut your nose to spoil your face. You have the opportunity to make the right choice,” Browne admonished.
Browne said he will use the next three weeks to prove to the people of St Mary’s South that George is the man best fit for the job as parliamentary representative.
“This by-election must be the single largest upset in the history of Antigua and Barbuda, and it will be…” Browne said
Meanwhile, George, once a member of the United Progressive Party (UPP), said his best choice was to leave the UPP.
He admitted he was “born Labour” but became “unruly” and joined the UPP.
He said UPP treated him like a “nobody” who had no use for him over the years he remained a committed member.
And Chairman of the ABLP E.P Chet Greene encouraged the young people of St Mary’s South to ensure their voter ID cards were ready.
He said the ABLP’s candidate is the right man for the job, promising that the ABLP has rallied around their candidate and will ensure the projects promised come to fruition.
“It is up to you to elect Dwayne George on by-election day. His heart is in the right place; he is not only ready to serve, but he is already serving. He is in the constituency every day, touching lives…to all the young people in Urlings, get on the Labour train; to all the seniors in this constituency, get on the Labour train…to all the people who did not vote for us in the last election, this is the time to make the right decision…” he said
The race is between the Antigua and Barbuda Labour Party candidate Dwayne George, UPP’s Kelvin Shugy Simon, Nigel Bascus, leader of the Missing Link-Voice of the People (MLVOP) Party and Andrew Antonio of the Democratic National Alliance Candidate (DNA)
Simon won the seat for the Constituency in the January 18 election, but he resigned as the Parliamentary Representative on June 7.
According to the law, his resignation triggered a by-election, which must be held within 120 days from the resignation.
Simon stated that he stepped down from the position to prevent his Constituents from being negatively affected by a prolonged legal battle.
The ruling ABLP had filed an election petition, questioning Simon’s eligibility for office, and he believed that this could lead to a lengthy legal dispute that would be detrimental to the Constituents.