I live or die based on my decisions — Phillips

I live or die based on my decisions — Phillips

Says shadow cabinet shuffle in the works before presidential challenge

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

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OPPOSITION Leader Dr Peter Phillips yesterday brushed aside suggestions that he was vindictive in omitting fiery People's National Party (PNP) Member of Parliament (MP) Dr Dayton Campbell from his new-look shadow cabinet, which he announced last week.
Phillips, who was responding to questions from journalists at a PNP press conference at the party's Old Hope Road headquarters in St Andrew, said “long before” the September 7 presidential election in which he staved off a challenge from Manchester Central MP Peter Bunting, he had taken the decision to reorganise the shadow cabinet.
“I am therefore struck that the contest, having got under way, we know where Dr Campbell was, but we know where other members of the team were. They have been appointed, reappointed, [and] some have been left out. I am struck that the assumption is made that the leaving out has to do solely and exclusively with the position that he took in the campaign,” the PNP president said.
Phillips said this position is not supported by either “logic or evidence”.
He said he made the best judgement in relation to all the people concerned, as well as after considering their contribution as Opposition members, the political needs of the party, and the needs of the country and the various sectors.
“It is [my decision]. I live or die, sink or swim on the basis of the decisions that I have made to the best of my ability and the best of my judgement at this point in time,” said Phillips.
Campbell, Bunting's campaign manager, served as Opposition spokesman on health and wellness in the House of Representatives before resigning from the portfolio last month.
He has been replaced by Morais Guy, the MP for St Mary Central.
Yesterday, Phillips defended his decision vigorously, stating that Guy, first elected to Parliament in 2002, was the right man for the job.
“He was just honoured by the Medical Association of Jamaica and is viewed to be a practitioner of high repute. I think that he has demonstrated in other areas of his public service a capacity for excellence, and I think he should be given a chance,” said Phillips.
Campbell, subsequent to the announcement of the shadow cabinet, told the Jamaica Observer last week that he had remained true to himself and his belief in supporting Bunting.
— Kimone Francis

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