BETHEL TOWN, Westmoreland — With rumours swirling that People's National Party General Secretary Dayton Campbell will fill the void left by Tuesday's resignation of Westmoreland Eastern constituency chairman Luther Buchanan, one comrade has offered Campbell some advice: Do your homework.
"I heard that he did have interest but the only thing I make of politics, if you have an interest in managing a business, first and foremost, you should look where the business is located and get a feel as to what the business is like," said party stalwart Theodore Williams.
Williams, who says he believes in the principles expounded by the party's late president former prime minister Michael Manley, was equally frank in his reaction to Buchanan's departure.
He said while former prime minister and MP for the constituency PJ Patterson — who retired in 2006 – had done a lot for the constituency, his personal view is that Buchanan, who lives in the constituency, will not be missed.
"If you put down something, would you miss it?" questioned Williams. "Unless you see where you make a mistake with yourself. And tell me what mistake dat yuh coulda mek when yuh nuh get any support fah wah yuh ah duh. That is how I see it. If I am wrong, I will apologise for it.
"I am not against Mr Buchanan, but the policies of Mr Buchanan is what you really don't support, because I live here and even with the bad roads and all of that, he should be the one to drop some marl. Mi understand him say him want to run back but if the people don't support you, how dem going to support you again," added Williams.
Efforts to reach Buchanan were unsuccessful. In his written resignation to PNP President Mark Golding, he did not state a reason for his departure.
On Wednesday, constituency Vice-Chairman Danree Delancy told the Jamaica Observer Buchanan was leaving to focus on his farm and new business venture.
"He expressed that these entities required more of his time, so it did not come as a surprise," said Delancy, who is also the deputy mayor of Savanna-la-Mar.
He said Buchanan had signalled his departure during a meeting held just over a week ago.
"Some people expressed disappointment because they thought he was leaving, but basically everybody wished him all the best in his endeavours," said Delancy.
He said the party has a structure in place which will see him and Michael Jackson — the two vice-chairs — hold down the fort until the party decides on the way forward. He said there should be no impact on preparations for the local polls constitutionally due next February at the latest.
"Every constituency in a parish has a parish committee, so to speak, in preparation for local government elections. There is a parish manager and each division also has a campaign manager. So, definitely, we will not be affected," stated Delancy.
He stressed that Buchanan had informed the constituency executive meeting that he was not walking away from the party and would make himself available for campaign activities whenever elections are called.
Before a constituency boundary reorganisation in 1993, the area was referred to as Westmoreland South Eastern. Buchanan held the seat from 2006 to 2020. A former state minister and PNP deputy general secretary, he was defeated by the Jamaica Labour Party's Daniel Lawrence in the September 2020 General Election.