“I know nothing of what you speak…No one has approached me. I am not that lucky.”
Those were the words uttered Monday by attorney-at-law, Derick Sylvester when approached by THE NEW TODAY newspaper on reports that he is talking to the New National Party (NNP) to run as its candidate for St. David in the upcoming general election.
The categorical denial came amidst reports from legal sources that Sylvester has been “bragging” about getting the nod from the NNP to replace the current Member of Parliament for St. David, Economic Development Minister, Oliver Joseph.
One source quoted Sylvester as saying that the country should expect “a big announcement” in the next few days from the NNP leadership about his candidacy for St. David.
According to the source, Sylvester who is from the village of Corinth, expressed confidence that he is well known in the Constituency and can easily win the seat for the NNP in the general election.
Speculation is rife that the ruling party has concerns about the constituency and the growing influence of the candidate from the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Adrian “Persuader” Thomas.
Joseph won the seat from Thomas, who is a top calypsonian as part of the NNP clean sweep of all 15 seats in the 2013 poll.
The ruling party has already announced 10 of its 15 “Caretakers” for the elections with St. David not among them.
In 2008, policeman Carl Caton had publicly denied being approached by the NNP to contest the rural St. Patrick East constituency in the upcoming election against former Prime Minister Tillman Thomas.
However, four hours later, Caton was on a platform of the NNP accepting nomination to contest the seat for the party.
With the NNP return to power in 2013, attorney Sylvester was one of three lawyers being considered by Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell for the post of Attorney-general which eventually went to Cajeton Hood.
Sylvester landed the post of Chairman of the influential Public Service Commission (PSC).
He came under fire over the Claudius Coutain affair when the Commission took the unsual decision to give the embattled senior police officer all the leave due to him to take him up to the age of retirement.
Coutain was suspended from active duties after he was arrested in 2015 in connection with a driver’s licence scam.
The case is still pending before the Magistrate’s Court.