Sixth District candidate for the National Democratic Party (NDP), Myron Walwyn, has signalled that he is not overly concerned about who is selected as the territory’s next leader from among the ranks of his party if they win office at the upcoming general elections.
“You see, I don’t have any hangups about who becomes Premier,” Walwyn said during his campaign launch last Friday. “Marlon [Penn] supported me on the last occasion to be Premier and I am here supporting him strongly, to become Premier. Give the incoming Premier a round of applause please.”
The former Education Minister suggested that he had given up chairmanship of the party without fanfare after he failed to win re-election at the 2019 polls, arguing at his campaign rally that he had no misgivings about leaving the NDP in Penn’s hands.
“I gave Marlon the chairmanship,” Walwyn disclosed. “Because he’s competent, he can do the job. And we are back here now with him to hold him up.”
He contrasted this position with the governing Virgin Islands Party (VIP) which he indicated was previously led by a one-man show in former Premier Andrew Fahie
, where “nobody could hold him up”.
“Marlon has a team that could hold him up. And so District Eight, give us our chairman on April 24 (election day),” Walwyn said, “because we’re not going anywhere without our chairman.”
Walwyn also revealed that he was the driving force in recruiting former Deputy Premier Dr Kedrick Pickering back into the NDP fold after the latter had broken with the party and started his campaign as an independent candidate for the second consecutive general election.
“When you want things done for the country where we are, you need the best minds assembled to get it done,” Walwyn said. “He (Dr Pickering) was giving a little trouble and thing. I tell them, boy, give he lil time, he got to cut lil style. But he came right back home.”
Rumours of infighting over leadership and policy direction plagued the NDP ahead of the 2019 general elections, leading to the departure of several of its members, including Dr Pickering, Archibald Christian and Progressive Virgin Islands Party (PVIM) members Ronnie Skelton and Melvin ‘Mitch’ Turnbull.