Convincing Region Four win will give Coalition victory – Granger
Incumbent President David Granger, who leads the six-party coalition bloc APNU+AFC, Friday night fired up supporters at a massive rally in Region Four by reminding them of what the PPP did in power, telling them than a convincing win in the region will give the Coalition victory at the March 02 general and regional elections.
“This is a battlefield region and we have to win the battle right here!” he declared to thousands of supporters who turned out for the rally at Golden Grove, East Coast Demerara, a short distance away from President’s College – the boarding school set up by Forbes Burnham – the founder of Granger’s party, the PNC, which is the largest party in the Coalition.
“We have to win the battle of numbers,” he told supporters, pointing out that at the last elections only 75% of eligible voters in the Region voted. Of those who voted, he said, 61% voted for the Coalition and 23% voted for the then ruling PPP.
Region Four, though the smallest in size, is the biggest in population. In the last elections, 113,856 persons voted for the Coalition, while 70,241 voted for the PPP.
Granger used most of his rally speech to focus on criticisms from Opposition Leader and PPP General Secretary Bharrat Jagdeo, though he never mentioned his name, instead calling him Pharaoh.
Granger pilloried the PPP for its record in government and took a swipe at the party’s line up for the elections, saying it is the first time in history you are seeing three-man on posters running for President, in an obvious reference to posters featuring Jagdeo together with the PPP’s Presidential and Prime Ministerial Candidates.
Referring to criticisms of his age, Granger reasoned that Jagdeo was elevated to the Presidency by “old people.”
“What does he have against old people? He only has what he has because of old people,” Granger declared.
Then President Janet Jagan was 79 when she stepped down and allowed Jagdeo to become President. Granger is now 74.
Turning to mentions of him attending church, Granger, in reference to Jagdeo, stated: “I am praying for you Pharaoh, I am praying that you see the light and turn from your ways.”
Granger also took time to answer questions about the house he now lives on the East Bank of Demerara, denying that he has a swimming pool and pushing aside any suggestion that state resources were funnelled into it, saying it was from his savings of 54 years of work.
Granger said the house was built by his brother 20 years ago and when he died three years ago, he decided to repair it.
“The Pharaoh is a haunted man,” Granger declared, haunted by the “jumbies” of his own mistakes, mismanagement, and misjudgements.
“If he comes back he is going to fail again!”
Granger also riled up the crowd by telling them that Jagdeo is “bazodee” with the funds that’s will flow from oil and gas.
“The man bazodee with the oil money – bazodee! But let me tell you this Demerara, put the oil money in the hands of people you trust.”
Granger said the Coalition is stronger together, but he pleaded with supporters to mobilise “massively” to ensure he is returned to office.