A plethora of candidates have gathered petitions in order to get on the November 6, 2012 ballot for the 2nd ward council election. In total 5 candidates have emerged, city clerk permitting, for the special election: Mohammed Akhtaruzzaman, the recently ousted 2nd ward councilman; Aslon Goow, the 3-term councilman; Sonia Torres, the wife of former Paterson Mayor Jose Torres. All three of the aforementioned candidates ran in the previous council election which was held in May of this year, and in which Mr Akhtaruzzaman gave both latter candidates a beating.
But there are two new candidates aspiring to make their mark and possibly emulate Mr Akhtaruzzaman’s May 2012 triumphant victory. Maidul Islam, an officer for the Passaic County Sheriff’s Office; and Zalal Uddin.
The two unknowns have been vigorously campaigning around the 2nd ward, mainly targeting the somewhat rueful Bangladeshi Community, beyond that not much is known of their activities.
Mr Akhtaruzzaman managed to get himself back in the fight, but it is unlikely that he will receive the same support and subsequently votes that he once garnered.
The battle hardened Mr Goow has galvanized himself with a court victory under his belt but has yet to excite anyone else; he will likely not receive many votes, for by the looks of things the politically active Bangladeshi Community sees him no longer as a friend and a fellow Muslim, but as an obstacle and hindrance to its political aspirations.
Ms Torres remains tainted with her husband’s last name. She has to figure out a way to convince her neighbors that her husband did a half-decent job running the city, which should not be a difficult to do considering the unpopularity of the present mayor. If she fails to do so, it will be a Groundhog Day style recurrence of May 2012.
Based on the candidate lineup, it should make for an interesting and tough contest this November.