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Dec 3, 2018

Dianne Finnegan is the New U.D.P. Standard Bearer for Lake I

Activist Dianne Finnegan and wife of Minister Michael Finnegan of the Mesopotamia Division, was elected U.D.P. standard bearer for Lake Independence. While small in numbers for the sprawling constituency, Sunday’s convention was high-spirited among the supporters of the four-person race.  Finnegan, who works with the Youth Apprenticeship Programme credited the youth for her win. While she has crossed one hurdle, she will now face the formidable Cordel Hyde of the P.U.P. whenever elections are called. News Five’s Duane Moody files the following report.


“I, Marion Dianne Finnegan, do solemnly swear that as the Untied Democratic Party standard bearer for Lake Independence constituency, I will work diligently to bring victory to our United Democratic Party. (Cheers)”


Duane Moody, Reporting

Dianne Finnegan is the new U.D.P. standard bearer for the Lake Independence constituency. After ten hours of voting and multiple on-the-ground machineries at work, seven hundred and fifty-two electors came out to determine which of the four U.D.P. candidates should represent them in the 2020 general elections against current area rep, Cordel Hyde. Former City councillor Jason Edward, Cecil Jenkins Junior and Samuel Cutkelvin went head to head against the only female in the race, Finnegan, who top the convention gaining two hundred and seventy-three votes.


Alberto August

Alberto August, Chairman, U.D.P.

“We had thirteen rejected balance during the counting process. Of the remaining ballots we had Samuel Cutkelvin with six votes; we have Jason Edwards with two hundred and twenty-eight votes, Cecil Jenkins with two hundred and thirty-two votes. And topping off the list, your elected standard bearer…your new, the elected standard bearer representing the United Democratic Party in the upcoming general elections, Dianne Finnegan.”


Dianne Finnegan, U.D.P. Standard Bearer, Lake I

“I’ve never been more hungrier for a victory than this one right here. It has nothing to do with me, but everything to do with you. So all I am asking is that you trust in me to deliver, to change your circumstances and to build back your dignity. The days of hand outs, the days of stepping on your dignity as a human being has got to be over. (Cheers)”


“Miss D for Lake I” permeated the air throughout the day and it would the end in a victory. Now, Finnegan, whose husband is a senior U.D.P. minister, is known for her work with young people through the Youth Apprenticeship Programme. So did her popularity amongst the youth in the area secure her the win?


Dianne Finnegan

Dianne Finnegan

“I would not be here if it wasn’t because of them. PIV, Back-a-land; the days, the nights we spent all together. I am grateful, I am humble and I couldn’t do what I am doing right now if it wasn’t for them.”


U.D.P. Minister Anthony ‘Boots’ Martinez welcomed Finnegan, saying she is the third female politician now active in the party.


Anthony ‘Boots’ Martinez

Anthony ‘Boots’ Martinez, Area Rep, Port Loyola

“I am the minister responsible for women and children and so I am so excited for Misses Finnegan and welcome her as my colleague. And I think it is a good day for the country, especially now in the U.D.P. line-up, we have three females: namely, Minister Panton, Minister Bev and now Misses Finnegan. It is welcoming for me. I have to believe and have all confidence that Misses Finnegan will deliver whenever the next election is called. That is my personal view and that is my wishes also.”


…but while a win is a win, the voter turnout for the convention was a dismal fourteen percent of the electoral division, which up to last official count has over five thousand one hundred registered voters.  So what led to the low voter turnout and can Finnegan change things around to unseat Hyde, who won the 2015 general elections with over three thousand votes?


Dianne Finnegan

“There may be a lot of reasons why there is a low voter turnout. And I want to sent one message. If we are going to go in a ring and fight, let’s fight this out like human beings. I am not even going to say man and woman. Just let’s fight this as human beings. Don’t manipulate the people to make a choice that they eventually will regret making. Let people live; let people do what they need to do. I am tired of seeing people suffering, I am tired of seeing the humiliating conditions in which people are living in. Yet we showcase their houses on social media, on the news as if though they don’t have their own dignity, but we do nothing to rectify the conditions in which they live in. People, it is time to stop; it is time to build yourself up and we are going to do that together because all of what I am doing is about Lake Independence, none of it is about me.”


Finnegan says that winning the convention is just the beginning of the work going forward to develop Lake Independence. Duane Moody for News Five.

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