MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT for San Fernando West, Carolyn Seepersad-Bachan has got mixed reviews from her constituents regarding her performance in the electoral district, and her decision to contest the leadership of the Congress of the People (COP).
Seepersad-Bachan, who is the COP’s chairman, has been an MP for four years. She announced her candidacy yesterday.
Fisherman Clifton Brazel, 44, of Kings’ Wharf, said residents in his area still lacked the basic necessities of pipe-borne water and electricity, which was the MP’s job to ensure were provided.
“I don’t think she means what she says. She promised a lot of things for this waterfront project and we are still waiting. As leader of the COP she will only be helping herself and her friends. If she is to be a good leader she has to come down and meet with the normal man on the street,” said Brazel.
CEPEP worker, Cindy Ali, 27, of Vistabella, agreed with Brazel. “No I don’t think she is a good representative because she does not come and meet her constituents. That is her work as an MP. She can do better. So I don’t know if she can lead the COP,” she said.
Another CEPEP worker, Ricky Sebastien, 29, of Marabella, admitted that Seepersad-Bachan can be more visible to her constituents, but she still had his support.
“She should be a good leader. But if she gets there she has to come out and do things for people. And then we will have confidence to vote for her again,” he said.
Another fisherman, Ben Mohammed, of Springvale, said Seepersad-Bachan is more of a “people person” than Ramadhar and has been serving her constituents well.
Mohammed said: “I think she will be a good leader for COP. She is more down to earth that Ramadhar. She has done things to help people in San Fernando West.”
Lyndon Hicks agreed with Mohammed. Hicks, 38, a fisherman of Marabella, said Seepersad-Bachan had more leadership qualities than Ramadhar.
“I think she will be a better leader that Prakash Ramadhar because she has been in politics longer than him. She has a certain vision which will lead the COP in a better direction. I support her to lead the COP,” said Hicks.
Retiree William Alleyne, 89, of Springvale said he will always support Seepersad-Bachan in any capacity.
“Once I could vote, I will give her my vote. I don’t know if she will be a better leader that Ramadhar. We will see,” said Alleyne.
Monica Brathwaite, 63, Vistabella, also believed that the San Fernando West MP was more qualified that Ramadhar for the COP leadership. Brathwaite said: “Yes she will be a good COP leader. She has the intellectual capacity, the appearance and she knows how to speak to people. She has helped a lot of her constituents, she even helped me personally. I will support her again.”
Some constituents were indifferent about the choice for COP leadership.
Donny Jaimungal, 32, a mechanic, of Vistabella, said: “ Everyone always says that their representative can do more. With her, she needs to be more visible to her constituents. But whether it is her or Ramadhar to lead the COP it will be the same to me because they only come around at election time.”
Ian Richards, 59, of Vistabella said: “The choice does not matter because of the way Trinidad and Tobago is now. I don’t know who is better or worse as a leader. Because it does not look like politicians can help us, only the Almighty.”