April 14, 2020 | By Hopeton O’Connor Dennie |
” Lie, power hungry and deceptive”. This is how a stalwart of over 30 years and member of the powerful National Executive Council (NEC) has described the president of the 81 year old PNP Dr. Peter David Phillips 70, who on or about March 23, 2020 underwent major surgery to remove stage 3 colon cancer. Phillips’ medical team has stated that his prognosis for full recovery after chemotherapy is good. Dr. Phillips has been ordered to rest for at least two weeks before resuming his duties as Opposition Leader.
Deputy Opposition Leader
Ironically, the Jamaican Constitution does allow for the provision of a deputy Opposition Leader or someone to officially act in the absence of or incapacity of that holder of office as it does in the case of say a Prime Minister. Interesting!
Was Dr. Peter Phillips not aware that he was seriously ill?
Based on our interview with a Senior medical doctor of 18 years who we will call Helena, not her correct name, there are visible signs or symptoms which manifest themselves for at least a year in a patient suffering from colon cancer until it progresses to stage 3 as is the case with Dr. Peter Phillips. Did he withhold this information for selfish reasons? If so can he be trusted to continue to hold this high constitutional office? Where do we go from here?
Secret Document signed with foreign government.
You will recall that on or about 2012 after that infamous State of Emergency and in particular incursion into Tivoli Gardens and subsequent enquiry into same … regarding then extradition of Christopher “Dudus” Coke. It was revealed that Dr. Phillips had secretly signed an agreement as National Security Minister said to be an alleged covert assistance with a foreign power which he withheld from his own PM Portia Simpson Miller and Cabinet of which he was a serving member.
With such an apparently checkered past should Dr. Phillips continue to enjoy our confidence and keep his job as Opposition Leader?
Is Dr. Wykeham McNeill plotting to replace Dr. Peter Phillips?
News reports have surfaced that a PNP activist has objected to a possible move to install VP Dr. Wykeham McNeill as interim party leader. VP McNeill has denied such an accusation. Our information is that such a manoeuvre is in violation of the constitution of the PNP. The rules of the People’s National Party (PNP) calls for a Special Delegates Conference to be held to elect a replacement should a vacancy exist. Allegedly the plan is for the officer corp to select McNeill as interim party leader until Dr. Phillips is fit and able to do so. Reports have also surfaced that Dr. Phillips plans to demit office by year’s end. We cannot confirm this report.
In light of the closeness of the last September 2019 Special Delegates’ Conference of 76 or 1 percent which Dr. Phillips won by, in the interest of cost Peter Bunting should be installed as party president and Opposition Leader. Despite the rosey picture being painted for Dr. Phillips’ recovery from stage 3 colon cancer.
This is our perspective. We have little interest in the internal politics of the PNP. Our main concern is to ensure that constitutional arrangements be adhered to. Dr. Peter Phillips as Leader of the Opposition holds a constitutional
Office. We hope the PNP will urgently get your act together.
The Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) must be having a field day as they see the PNP shooting themselves in their feet. The PNP must settle their leadership issues without further delay if they wish to be seen as a credible opposition. Is Dr. Phillips “a liar, and power hungry individual who deceived delegates about a year ago”. As stated by a PNP activist from the Rise United Team. As usual the verdict is yours.
Hopeton O’Connor-Dennie has been watching Jamaican politics for over four decades. He is also a veteran journalist & Senior, National & International Correspondent for Vision Newspaper.