Former People’s National Movement (PNM) Government Minister Gary Hunt has decided to throw his full support behind his brother Lieutenant Colonel Ahloy Hunt, the United National Congress (UNC) St Joseph candidate.
Hunt (G), who said yesterday he’s unhappy with Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley’s leadership, will be accompanying his brother today to file his nomination papers at the St Joseph Community Centre at 9 a.m. He will also be actively campaigning with his brother in a bid to unseat incumbent PNM MP Terrence Deyalsingh.
In an exclusive interview with the Express yesterday, Hunt said blood is thicker than water and he needs to stand by his brother who supported him in his own political journey in 2007 when he contested the Port of Spain North/St Ann’s West seat on a PNM ticket.
From 2007 to 2010 Hunt served as Minister of Sport and Youth Affairs under the administration of former Prime Minister Patrick Manning.
Asked why he decided to openly pledge support for his brother, Hunt responded: “I’ve taken a decision based on love. I love my brother, we’ve done everything in our lives together, we are an integrated close knit family. Blood is thicker than water. When I was making my journey in 2007 he was at my side and he was supportive 100 per cent. He’s making his journey now and I want to support him on his journey because I think he has something to offer to the constituents of St Joseph and the people of Trinidad and Tobago at large. I’m supporting him not 100 per cent, 200 per cent.”
Lack of creative
Hunt (G) said the people of this country are suffering and things will get worse without proper leadership.
“Like the 99 per cent who struggle for the one per cent of Trinidad and Tobago, I am in that 99 per cent. I am not happy with the delivery of goods and services and care, attention and the lack of love for people. The suffering will increase due to lack of creative economic initiatives,” he said.
He said a lot of “textbook economists” have criticised United States President Donald Trump but he has a record of stimulating economic activity.
Hunt said Trinidad and Tobago’s GDP has declined in the face of this country being one of the most creative places on the planet.
“This little dot that we live on invented a musical instrument, we are the home of Carnival, everything that is Caribbean comes from T&T,” he said, adding that T&T also has numerous Olympic achievements.
“We have shown resilience to come out of adversity but we need the leadership, we need somebody to inspire people to take us out of debt and I don’t think we are getting that from the present, I think we need more inspiration and more people centred governance, in other words a little more,” said Hunt.
Asked specifically if he was disappointed with the PNM, he said: “Well by virtue of me supporting my brother that speaks volumes. Actions speak louder than words.”
Thinking out of the box
Questioned on whether he supports the policies of the UNC and their National Transformation Plan, Hunt said it speaks to out of the box thinking.
“From what I’ve seen, heard and read of the UNC policies, we need out of the box thinking to take us to the next step, we need a level of innovation and I haven’t seen that from this present Government. Nothing innovative. I feel the embracing of technology and a knowledge base society to take us forward is something good and I feel that will be good for Trinidad and Tobago,” he said.
Hunt (G) said he encourages his brother’s pursuit of politics as he noted that he learnt that it is about service to the people.
“I’ve been guided by these words — politics is a vocation. It’s about giving of yourself, a duty to start something higher and I was advised. It’s not about self aggrandisement. If you enter politics to get rich that is a not the purpose of politics. It is about the development of people and ultimately you have your responsibility and I feel that my brother is well suited to that,” he said.
Hunt (G) said his brother is caring and also has a wealth of experience and can be an asset in making T&T safe.
“Crime is the number one issue in Trinidad and Tobago and crime prevents economic development. If we are able to make a dent and change the trend towards reducing it it’s a good thing and I feel he has a good strong technical, tactical (skills) and the character to bring some good solutions to that issue in Trinidad and Tobago,” he said.
In a telephone interview with the Express yesterday, Hunt (Ahloy) said his brother’s love and support is a blessing.
“I have only one brother and he has already paved the way. I am relying on his experience to guide me through my early days as an MP. His contribution is going to be invaluable to me,” he said.
Hunt (A) said with his brother at his side they will together be a united “force to be reckoned with”.
He said his brother is a “calculated and intelligent man” and his agreement with the UNC manifesto to get Trinidad and Tobago working again is a good sign. He said there is high energy on the ground and the people of St Joseph are ready for proper representation, especially those in the depressed areas.
He said many constituents who are suffering are still awaiting Covid-19 relief grants.
Hunt (A) said he will not be daunted by any political attacks and criticisms.
“I will put nothing past the PNM, I think they are desperate because we have exposed the failings of terrible Terry and people are focused on the issues poor representation, high crime rate, no water and unemployment, the list goes on and on,” he said.