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Bottles rain on ULP Red Lime at Petit Bordel

Bottles rain on ULP Red Lime at  Petit Bordel

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What was supposed to be a peaceful Friday night roadside barbecue at “Officer’s shop” in Petit

Bor­del turned ugly for Unity Labour Party (ULP) supporters, as the red clad crowd was pelted with bottles by persons dressed in yellow, the colour of the New Democratic Party (NDP).{{more}}

According to the ULP’s North Leeward candidate Carlos James, he had to discharge two rounds from his licensed firearm to stop the bottle pelting that sent some of his supporters scurrying into the shop, seeking refuge.

Reports are that around 9 p.m., James and a few of his supporters were engaged in a ‘Red Lime’ at ‘Officer’s shop,’ while NDP supporters were hanging out nearby at a shop owned by opposition parliamentary representative for the area Roland ‘Patel’ Matthews.

“One gentleman, who in my estimation appears to be someone who is perhaps under the influence, junkie or crackie, came into the crowd of ULP supporters and instigated what, in my mind, would be the start of what transpired,” explained James.

He added that from what he observed, the man whom he described as “junkie or crackie,” was a male NDP supporter and he was provoking a female ULP supporter, who happened to have been an NDP supporter in the 2010 elections.

“…he came and he provoked persons there and after a rain of missiles, Hairoun bottles, descended on the crowd from the direction of a nearby shop that is owned and operated by Patel Matthews,” said James.

James said that ‘Officer’s shop’ belongs to a known ULP supporter, Matthias Nanton and persons decided to paint the shop in red to show the ULP support. The ULP candidate said that initially, the crowd at the ULP shop attracted NDP supporters who were dancing and it was “pleasant and peaceful.”

He said that, in his opinion, the initial provocation was not an attack, but “a little confrontation,” which could have been handled differently, but was not, and which escalated and was used to fuel what transpired.

“Maybe he was sent, that NDP supporter”, James said, noting that the first set of bottles sent persons seeking refuge in the shop.

“…and you think after doing that, they would stop, it went on for a good solid 10 to 14 minutes, it continued,” stressed James, who also stated that bottles, apart from hitting on the shop’s roof, also flew into the shop, injuring persons.

James added that while he is not knocking the police, he thinks that there was a delayed response from those stationed at the Chateaubelair Police Station, which is what caused him to fire two warning shots in the air.

“….that caused me to take certain action to prevent a much more serious incident from happening. I discharged two rounds to disperse the crowd of persons who were hurling missiles into the shop and at persons. Every attempt was made to have the police respond. I would say they were trapped in the shop and that is why I resorted to that, I felt that persons were trapped,” said James who revealed that he went to the back of the building and discharged the shots into the air to quell the action and it worked.

“After they (police) were saying they on their way, they took a considerable time to get there. The people were jammed up under the shed and holding their heads; all the ULP supporters were seeking refuge from the attack of people dressed in yellow,” said James.

In answer to whether or not it was foolhardy for the ULP to have a party in Petit Bordel, a place considered an NDP stronghold, James said that the barbecue wasn’t a ULP event as such, but one organized by villagers who are supporters of the ULP.

“…it is a democracy, I don’t think it is poor judgement that people want to come out and wear party colours,” said James, who added that the majority of the persons at the barbecue supported the NDP in 2010, but now support him, while he also opined that persons in Petit Bordel are, for the first time, openly coming out to support their party and candidate.

James said that the incident is not going to stop or deter his supporters.

He said he stands a good chance of taking the parliamentary seat from Matthews and once the feel on the ground is correct, the ULP will win once the people go out and vote.

“In light of what transpired, I want to ask the supporters in North Leeward to remain calm and resolute in their support. We cannot allow these things to deter us.”

The aspiring representative said there is a growing level of support for the ULP in Petit Bordel and there are many persons who traditionally were NDP supporters who are now out and supporting the ULP. (LC)

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