By CALVIN ADKINS
THE DAILY SOUTHERNER
PRINCEVILLE — The town of Princeville's mayoral candidates will have an opportunity to express their reasons as to why why they are running for the town's top office at a political forum, scheduled to 6 p.m. Saturday at Princeville Elementary School.
The forum is sponsored by Milton Bullock, one of the four candidates who is seeking the seat. Bullock has cordially invited the other candidates — Incumbent Mayor Priscilla Everette-Oates, Bobbie Jones and Theresa Williams.
Bullock said the forum "Would be a grand opportunity to hear some of the thoughts and plans envisioned by the prospective-hopefuls. The meeting isn’t intended to be your regular political ‘character bashing’ denigrating debate, but more so of a true coming together of the minds of the people."
With the recent alleged scandals and the town finance being taken over by the Local Government Commission, the mayoral race could be one of the most important in the town history. A vast majority of the town citizens have shown that they are dissatisfied with the current mayor and the entire administration. However, Everette-Oates followers have proven their dedication to the two-time mayor. During the town's August town hall meeting, approximately a dozen of her followers, including her sister and brothers, petitioned in her favor.
Everette-Oates is facing 17 charges of misappropriation of funds. She have claimed from the beginning that the charges are fabricated against her and she is innocent. She is scheduled to appear in the Edgecombe County Superior Court Dec. 10.
Everette-Oates is serving her second term. She was also the mayor from 2000-2005.
Bullock, a native of Princeville and a former member of the renowned rock and roll group, "The Platters,' moved back to Princeville about 10 years ago. He said he became engaged in Princeville politics after constant negative headlines filled the newspapers.
For Williams, running for the mayor's seat will not be her first attempt. In the last mayor's race, she also ran against Everette-Oates, Delia Perkins, Tyrone Hopkins and Freddie Bell. Williams received only 40 votes compared to Everette-Oates' 294.
Jones, an assistant principal in the Nash-Rocky Mount school system, is a newcomer to politics. Jones ran a successful family restaurant in the town for many years.
A five-minute time period will be allocated for questions from the audience.