Tracy Davidson-Celestine made history, becoming the first female leader of the People’s National Movement (PNM) Council in Tobago.
The TT Ambassador to Costa Rica won over 60 per cent of the votes in a runoff election held on Sunday (Jan 26), going up against the incumbent PNM leader Kelvin Charles. The two previously ran against each other in the 2016 internal elections when Charles emerged victorious.
In her victory speech, she thanked Charles for her service, adding, “I know that you will continue to guide and serve in other capacities to continue building the Tobago PNM.”
She also thanked her former opponents, Joel Jack and Dr Denise Tsoiafatt Angus, who both threw support behind her for the runoff. “You also will be called upon to continue in your leadership of the party as we now heal and continue to get ready for the upcoming elections,” she said.
Confirming her promise made before the runoff, Davidson-Celestine reiterated that she will resign from her post as ambassador to Costa Rica to fully service as PNM Council Leader. “I will be very present in Tobago to ensure the party is organised in a particular manner and that we can win the next set of elections—both the general election and the Tobago House of Assembly elections.”
She also addressed speculation of voter padding during the first election after there was a marked delay in the delivery of ballot boxes to the Tobago PNM head office. “I also want to highlight that our elections, although fiercely contested, was free and fair, which speaks volumes to this great institution.”
Davidson-Celestine and Charles were pushed into a runoff election on Sunday after neither was able to secure the constitutional majority vote during election on January 19.