(CNS): Kenneth Bryan, the MLA for George Town Central, whose constituency will be home to the controversial cruise berthing facility if government presses ahead with the project, has cancelled a public meeting he had arranged for this week after Tourism Minister Moses Kirkconnell said he would not attend. Bryan has been trying to get the minister to come and speak directly with his constituents about the project, given the direct impact it will have on them, but although he had agreed to a meeting, he cancelled for the second time over the last few months, Bryan said.
The GTC MLA said that, since the minister would not be there to answer his constituents’ questions, he had cancelled the meeting and was now turning his attention to polling the registered voters in his district about their feelings on the port.
Bryan told CNS that he had wanted the tourism minister to come and speak to his constituents before he surveyed the public opinion of George Town because he felt that would put them in a better position to decide how they felt about what has become a very divisive issue.
“But for the second time the minister has declined to attend, even though I had not invited the opposition or CPR campaigners, giving him an opportunity to present the government’s position. I’m not sure whether this is politics or what, but it’s very disappointing as he had made a commitment to me on the floor of the House to meet with my constituents,” Bryan told CNS.
In the survey that Bryan is now conducting, he is asking his constituents what they think about the proposed development and so far, of those that have responded, only 20% say they support the cruise project, with over 50% against and the rest as yet undecided.
Bryan said that as he has only just started his poll, he has not yet been able to get it to all of voters in the district and so far less than a quarter of his 1,247 constituents have responded. But he said that if he could get a response from around half of the electorate in the central area of the capital, it will give him a clear indication of the general feeling of the people he represents. The results will then help inform what he will do going forward to support their wishes.
Anyone who lives in GTC can contact his constituency office to take part in the poll and help him get a true measure of the constituency’s opinion.
“The very early results seem to indicate that this project is not popular among those who are going to be the most impacted, but I don’t want to jump to any conclusions until I have results in from voters across the constituency. This is a much too important an issue not to have the facts,” he said.
“That’s why the minister’s decision not to come to George Town, when I was offering him an open platform to address the people about the project without any opposing presentations, is so disappointing,” he added.
To take part in the GTC constituency poll contact Bryan on 936 4040.