The National Democratic Congress (NDC) Candidate for the Constituency of St. George North West, Alie Dowden has received strong support from the high echelon of the party during the launch of his candidacy, which formed part of the opening of his party office last week Wednesday.
The ceremonial cutting of the ribbon to declare open the office, which is a stone’s throw away from the home of Opposition Leader Dr. Keith Mitchell, was done by Dowden along with the Deputy Political Leader of NDC, Nazim Burke.
In his address, Burke described the occasion as one to mark the launch of the political career of an outstanding young man.
He noted that Dowden is a young man who has volunteered much of his time to many organisations, serving at no cost.
“He gave of himself, he gave of his time in a most selfless way to meet the needs of those whom he saw to be in greater need,” he said.
From the age of 18, Dowden headed the Kidney Foundation of Grenada.
The NDC Deputy Political Leader indicated that in the face of all the temptations and distractions, Dowden has consciously and singularly chartered his life to be a man of morality, high standards and one who has demonstrated, by his conduct that he is prepared to do what is right.
Burke said he is not surprised that Dowden eventually decided to associate himself with NDC.
“I am not surprise… that he did not choose to associate himself with the other party because he recognised… that the National Democratic Congress is a party that is founded on some core principles,” he remarked.
“We are, therefore, most impressed and satisfied that this young man made the right choice and came to the party of decency, the party of honesty, the party of integrity,” he said.
Chairman of the NDC and candidate for the Town of St. George, Franka Bernadine stated that they all are very pleased and proud of Dowden as he represents the youth of Grenada.
The Education Minister said the presence of the young man on the political platform should provide great hope for the youth of Grenada and encourage them to take their rightful place and be guided by the elders in moving forward for the development of the country.
“It gives us great hope to see a young man of 20 years old… coming forward to talk about the development of his country,” she added.
According to Bernadine, the party is one hundred percent behind the launching of Dowden’s candidacy.
She described him as being a young man with great integrity and forthrightness, and one who has a commitment to serve his country.
The NDC Chairman indicated that the party, which was formed 25 years ago, is not one of “ah eat ah food” and that politics in the Caribbean has gone well past that notion.
“In our (NDC) programmes it is not going to be ‘ah eat ah food’. It is going to be something far more solid than that. It’s about building people, and we have put our commitment, put our money where our mouth is,” she said.
Bernadine disclosed that the Congress administration of Prime Minister Tillman Thomas has allocated 15 percent of the budget for education, which she said, can break the poverty cycle.
Candidate for the South St. George constituency, Merle Byer who also addressed the ceremony spoke of Dowden’s courage, bravery, forthrightness and honesty.
Byer said when she looks at the map of Grenada she does not see any part marked out for specially chosen people, but instead equality for all.
“We are here (at Happy Hill) to claim this part of Grenada. I didn’t see anything on the will that this is your place and there is no right for anybody else to come. Alie is here, Alie is going to take his share and if they give him more he is going to take all,” she told the gathering.
Dowden is coming up against the Opposition Leader who has not lost the seat since taking it back in the 1984 general election.
Byer pleaded with the residents of St. George North West to give the young politician a fair chance in the constituency as she does not believe he would promise to do anything that is beyond him.
“I want to compliment Alie, I want to give him all my support and I wish that all the people who are listening to me… come out and support. Do the right thing (for) once in your life and vote NDC,” she said.
The female candidate also threw out a challenge to the people of St. George North West who are not yet members of NDC to be part of the process.
She said once they are willing to work honestly for what they want, they would be welcomed.
Byer said members of the Congress know how to speak the truth and are not afraid to do so.