Doctor Ernest Hilaire is the ruling Saint Lucia Labour Party ‘s candidate for Castries South, succeeding Doctor Robert Lewis who recently announced that he was bowing out of elective politics after two terms as MP for the constituency.
The labour party’s General Secretary, Leo Clarke, in confirming what has been a fairly open secret, told the Times that although a formal announcement has not been made, Hilaire has a long history with the party.
“He has been in several of the labour party campaigns and has very strong links to the constituency,” Clarke noted.
He recalled that Hilaire was born in the hospital road area and grew up there.
Clarke said disclosed that Hilaire’s parents were from the Barre St Joseph area and he has a strong connection with young people.
“We have a lot of confidence that he is going to connect with that constituency in a very good way,” the SLP General Secretary asserted.
Clarke said he anticipated that Doctor Ernest Hilaire will be successful in retaining the seat for the Saint Lucia Labour Party.
The main opposition United Workers Party’s endorsed candidate for Castries South, Mary Isaac, in December last year described Hilaire as a “good contender.”
Nevertheless Isaac asserted that at the end of the day the issue will be who can best represent the people and understand their issues.
The former President of the Saint Lucia Civil Service Association (CSA) said she believed she understands the issues facing the people and has a plan for them.
“I know that the people want change and the change is with the United Workers Party,” Isaac declared, adding that the Castries South constituency has been neglected.
Asked whether there was any significance to the fact that Hilaire would be running against a woman, SLP General Secretary Leo Clark declared that a woman has the same right as a man to offer herself to be elected and observed that it would not be the first time that an electoral contest would involve a male and a female.
“I don’t think that a woman is disadvantaged by the fact that she is a woman, but we have tremendous confidence in our own candidate,” Clarke told the Times.