Date set for long-overdue PNC/R Congress – Volda Lawrence yet to decide on running for leader

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After a lengthy delay amid a growing internal party row, acting Leader of the People’s National Congress Reform (PNC/R) Volda Lawrence on Friday announced that the Party’s 22nd Biannual Congress will be before the end of 2021.

During a virtual press briefing, Lawrence said the Central Executive Committee (CEC) of the Party, at its meeting held on Thursday, approved the recommendations for the hosting of the party’s congress where new leadership will be elected.

According to Lawrence, the congress will be held by the end of November 2021 but no later than December 13, 2021.

“The consideration is linked to the Thanksgiving event in the USA,” she said.

The Congress will be for delegates only and will be decentralized and hybrid. It will be conducted as a one-day event at congress houses in the respective regions.

The next step is for the CEC to put in place a congress committee that will have administrative responsibility for hosting the event in a specific time frame.

“At the next CEC meeting, we propose to set up the congress committee which will be in a week time and it will carry out the mandate reposed in it by the party leadership,” she added.

Asked if she will seek election for any position including the leader of the party, Lawrence said she will await nominations. She is currently the party’s substantive Chairman.

“Based on nominations I will give considerations,” she said.

Already, Aubrey Norton and Dr. Richard Van West Charles have said they would be contesting for the post of leader. Former President David Granger is the current Party Leader. But his leadership has come in for heavy criticism from party members following his defeat at the March 02, 2020, General and Regional Elections.

Granger has since taken a sabbatical from the party citing that he needs his rest.

Asked about assurances that balloting will be free and fair given the hybrid nature of the congress, Lawrence said there is a system in place to ensure that is achieved.

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