BY VERNON DAVIDSON Executive editor — publications firstname.lastname@example.org
AUDLEY Shaw's bid to lead the Opposition Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) received a big shot in the arm Saturday afternoon when the party's Central Clarendon executive voted to give him its support.
Veteran JLP parliamentarian Mike Henry revealed the result of his constituents' vote in a phone discussion with the Jamaica Observer yesterday.
"The constituency executive voted at an emergency meeting on Saturday that they will support Mr Shaw," Henry said, adding that the constituency has 113 delegates.
However, Henry made it clear that, despite the decision, he will not be campaigning for either Shaw or incumbent JLP leader Andrew Holness.
He said that instead, he will be focusing on developing the constituency which he has represented for 33 years. In addition, he hopes to have implemented, some of the policies — outlined in his latest book, A Political Journey of Audacious Hope — that, he believes, will improve Jamaica.
"My book speaks to things that I think need to be done for the country," Henry said.
The support from Henry's constituency is good news for Shaw, who officially launched his campaign on Sunday at a mass rally in Mandeville at which he advocated term limits for the party leader — a position long held by Henry and which was voiced by former JLP leader Bruce Golding during his days at the helm of the National Democratic Movement.
Yesterday, Henry welcomed Shaw's advocacy of term limits, but said he has not yet had a discussion with the North East Manchester MP about other issues on which he holds strong views.
"I don't know if Mr Shaw supports Rastafari as a religion or the use of marijuana as a sacrament," Henry explained, adding that when Golding returned to the JLP he had discussed both issues with Golding who, he said, told him that he had no problem with his (Henry's) stance on both matters.
Meanwhile, last night, Shaw said he would not sign a code of conduct for the election until issues he had with the delegates list are resolved.