Nunez-Tesheira loses last-ditch appeal to stop PNM elections

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Nunez-Tesheira loses last-ditch appeal to stop PNM elections

Challenger for the post of political leader of the People’s National Movement (PNM), Karen Nunez-Tesheira, has lost her appeal to postpone the party’s internal elections – which begin this weekend.

The emergency appeal was heard at 6 pm on Friday by Appellate Judges Nolan Bereaux and Peter Rajkumar.

Both judges ruled that High Court Judge Devindra Rampersad correctly rejected the bid to stop the election.

Justice Bereaux, who delivered the panel’s decision, said: “We cannot say he (Rampersad) committed any error or was plainly wrong. It seems to us, he was plainly right.”

The judges also ordered to pay the legal costs for the appeal.

Justice Rampersad ruled that Nunez-Tesheira, chairman candidate Dr Kenneth Butcher and Bishop Victor Phillip, who is contesting the post of election officer, had raised an arguable case over the ability of the party’s incumbent executive council to decide to host the election on three separate days (November 26, 27, and December 4), over a nine-day period instead of on one day. However, he pointed out that they were not entitled to the injunction, as they failed to prove that they would be prejudiced if the election was allowed to go ahead as planned.

“There is no actual evidence of the potential for an unfair election—just a fear that is really expressed more in the submissions than on the Claimants’ affidavit,” Justice Rampersad said.

He also noted that they could pursue the legal challenge even after the election was completed and the results announced.