Ramjattan flip-flops on conceding defeat during T&T TV Show
Caretaker Public Security Minister and Prime Ministerial Candidate of the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) coalition, Khemraj Ramjattan has strongly denied conceding defeat at the March 2 General and Regional Elections, although there is an audio recording being widely circulated on social media of him informing top security officers of his ministry that the coalition lost the elections.
Ramjattan was captured on audio saying during a “farewell speech” at his ministry, that the coalition was beaten at the March 2 polls by some 15,000 votes.
From making allegations of Russians interfering in the elections to claims of dead and migrated persons voting, Ramjattan had at the time admitted that “it is the end” of the APNU/AFC coalition Government.
However, during an interview on Thursday with Trinidad’s CCN TV6, he backpedalled, denying that he ever conceded the coalition’s loss.
This is what Ramjattan was quoted in the recording as saying:
“It is with a little sadness that I want to say a couple of remarks to you. I don’t know…although I rather suspect that there will be a declaration. The numbers were against us, I am prepared to accept and to move on…”
“From all indications, the results of the recount and everything else, the PPP has beaten us by some 15,000 votes”.
However, when asked by the host Fazeer Mohammed to confirm the recording, Ramjattan had this to say: “That is absolutely not correct. I indicated because being Prime Ministerial Candidate, you would have to move out from the Public Security Ministry and I was aware that there was going to be an announcement just before this matter went to our Court of Appeal that there will be an announcement with a declaration.
“So, I just went to thank my officers, all the heads of the unit of my Security Ministry and that is exactly what I did. I indicated to them and thanked them for what they did, the results, one way or the other, are going to be declared soon, and we will respect that and we will move on. I will move on if we win the elections, certainly to the Office of Prime Minister.”
Also, on April 21, the coalition’s PM Candidate had told media operatives that if the national recount shows that the PPP/C won the General and Regional Elections, he would be the first to congratulate the Party’s Presidential Candidate, Dr Irfaan Ali.
“I would immediately congratulate Irfaan Ali and tell him, ‘God bless’, and, ‘I am here to give as much support as possible’,” Ramjattan had said.
The national recount has since confirmed that the PPP/C won the March 2 elections by 15,416 votes over its nearest political rival, the APNU/AFC coalition.
Meanwhile, Ramjattan and his colleagues, both in the AFC and APNU, are yet to accept the results and concede defeat in spite of mounting calls and threats of international sanctions for them to concede and allow for a transition of power to the PPP/C.