Astaphan says that change in ALP’s strategy – to house to house campaigning – allows for greater persuasion and gift-giving

Dwyer Astaphan, a St. Kitts and Nevis attorney and political activist, says the apparent inroads by the United Progressive Party (UPP) and the strong support it has attracted caused the Antigua Labour Party (ALP) to change its campaign strategy mere days before the General Election.

On Saturday, January 14, ALP political leader Gaston Browne announced that the party would not hosting any further rallies ahead of the polls, but would, instead, engage in a house-to-house campaign.

Many found this to be a strange move – since rallies usually bring out a party’s base of supporters and energize voters – and

fence-sitters are usually encouraged by the numbers at rallies as well.

Therefore, Astaphan concludes, because of the strong showing at the UPP rallies, the Labour Party is seeking to avoid comparisons that would demoralize its supporters.

According to the attorney, Browne could have perceived that he was losing the battle on this front, and therefore decided to switch up his strategy at the last minute.

Astaphan notes, too, that a house-to-house strategy allows for more “persuasive” campaigning – in terms of leaving gifts with the electors in return for votes.  And he says this could determine the final outcome of the election.

In his estimation, Astaphan says, the UPP has been doing a good job of campaigning and winning the battle in terms of bringing out its supporters.

He also gives credit to independent candidate Asot Michael, who also seems to have the Labour Party running scared, Astaphan says.