Member of Parliament Asot Michael has been announced as one of 17 candidates who will run on an Antigua Barbuda Labour Party (ABLP) ticket for the next general election.
The MP was relieved as a cabinet member and from all of his ministerial duties in October, shortly after he was arrested by the Metropolitan Police in London.
But on Monday morning, while addressing the V.C Bird wreath laying ceremony, Prime Minister Gaston Browne named Michael among the 17 ABLP candidates who will compete.
He said, “Even comrade Asot Michael who has had some difficulties, we have embraced him as one of us, and he too will be a candidate in the next general elections.”
Browne also named his wife – Maria Bird-Browne, who will run in St Johns Rural East and Daryl Matthew in St Johns Rural South.
And based on a second CADRES poll, Senator Londell Benjamin will run in St Johns Rural West.
“This morning we got the results of a second poll that was done in the Rural West constituency, and based on the fact that comrade Londell Benjamin is now leading the UPP opponent, comrade Londell Benjamin is the candidate for Rural West,” the prime minister explained.
He confirmed too that Senator Lennox Weston will remain as the candidate to run in St Phillips South. “We told the other person to stand down” the prime minister said jokingly.
Prime Minister Browne said the poll, which randomly tested 350—400 people in each electoral district “represents the best option in each constituency.”
“We have consistently utilised polls so we can understand the pulse of the people, and I say to you, a poll that is done scientifically by an independent organisation such as CADRES is the best indicator of the will of the people,” he told onlookers.
Following the ceremony, Browne told state media “the polls are indicating that we [ABLP] could literally win all the seats. In fact, it would appear that the labour party now, is stronger in government than even in opposition.”
The prime minister who again teased that the election date would come “like a thief in the night”, told state media that “All 17 candidates are in place, so at any time today or thereafter, the bells could ring.”
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