The Progressive Party said that the Elections and Boundaries Commission (EBC) has failed to properly represent the Party’s (Progressive) symbol on the ballot in the 2020 general elections.
According to a release from the Party, “The symbol approved by the Progressives and the EBC back in 2017 was not what was placed on the ballot and to date, the EBC has offered no explanation for this.”
In a letter sent to the Chief Elections Officer Fern Narcis-Scope, Political Leader of the Party Nikoli Edwards said that he submitted an application for use of the symbol to the EBC on May 8th, 2017.
“Subsequently, on August 18th, 2017 correspondence was received from Ms. Catherine Noel, Public Relations Officer, EBC with the subject – Re: Application for use of symbol – Progressive Party in which it was noted that the Party’s symbol was approved.”
“In the correspondence, it was explained that a copy of the symbol was to be sent to the Government Printer for preparation and would then be sent to me for approval before being published in the Trinidad and Tobago Gazette.”
He said on October 3rd, 2017 correspondence was again received from Ms. Noel with the reproduction of the symbol by the Government Printer for approval which Edwards then granted.
On October 23rd, 2017 the symbol was published in the Trinidad and Tobago Gazette.
The description of the symbol is a blue and gold flame with a spiral base. To the left of the flame is the words ‘Progressive Party’ in bold and the colour blue.
Edwards told IzzSo News that, “The words “Progressive Party” form the entire symbol and that was what was approved.”
However, the Party noticed that the incomplete symbol is on the ballot paper while witnessing the issuing of ballots to special electors.
“This is problematic as in our election advertising and campaigning we have attempted to etch in the minds of the electorate our complete symbol for familiarity leading to polling day,” Edwards said.
The Progressives believe this can confuse San Fernando West electors where the party has offered its sole candidate, Political Leader Nikoli Edwards.
“Throughout the campaign, the party has been using its complete symbol and advised its supporters to look for that on the ballot paper.”
The party said that this latest error by the EBC has the potential to confuse electors and thus the party has written to the EBC seeking clarity and a way forward.
They have requested that the EBC acknowledges that it has failed to place the correct symbol on the ballot paper and that it outlines any and all measures it shall take to ensure that the electorate is aware that the incorrect symbol was placed on that ballot.