Bunting backs down ... Phillips poised to be PNP President
Peter Bunting has backed down from a challenge with Dr Peter Phillips for the presidency of the People's National Party.
The Central Manchester member of parliament made the announcement by way of a media release on Monday.
"I have held a series of consultations with the parliamentary and local government leadership, and have concluded that a large majority feels that “it is Cde. Peter Phillips’ turn,” Bunting said.
"Political parties are national organisations, and I believe that leadership decisions should be made on a wider set of considerations. Nevertheless, in the face of this strong sentiment, it would be irresponsible to cause the Party to expend resources and divert our focus and energy at this time. Therefore, I will not be going forward in this contest," Bunting added.
His announcement will, almost certainly, lead to Dr Phillips succeeding Portia Simpson Miller as PNP president.
Dr. Peter Phillips
Bunting said that when he threw his my hat in the ring as an aspirant to succeed her he did so with the conviction that it was time for the next generation of leadership to refresh the image of the Party and help to attract a broader base of support, particularly among younger voters.
"I believe my track record of achievement in both politics and the private sector has equipped me to provide that leadership," Bunting said.
He said that Phillips has made, and continues to make, an outstanding contribution to our nation and he will have his support when he becomes the next president of the PNP.
"For my own part, I will offer to work on areas of weakness within the party that have been identified publicly in various reports since February," Bunting said.
"I wish to thank the many comrades and friends across Jamaica who have indicated their willingness to campaign in support of my candidacy, especially Comrades Golding, Buchanan, and Hayles who came out strongly in the media. Please rest assured that I will continue to offer myself in service to party and country, and feel certain that there will be continuing avenues for us all to contribute," Bunting said.