PNC says elections machinery well-oiled for Saturday’s Congress


The People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) on Thursday said the party’s elections machinery is well oiled and activated for the 21st Biennial Congress on Saturday when it will choose a new leader.

The elections are being run by Vincent Alexander who backed the declaration of unverified results in the country’s general elections last year that would have fraudulently kept the David Granger government and his Coalition in power.

Now, as Chief Elections Officer of the PNCR’s elections, he has assured of a democratic process and transparency in the vote and count, saying once all goes well, he could deliver the results by Sunday morning before praise and worship.

Former President Granger was effectively booted out, securing no nomination to return as leader. He led the party to victory in a Coalition in 2015 but did not survive a full term as his government was toppled in a No Confidence motion in December 2018. Instead of calling elections in three months as the Constitution dictated, a series of legal manuevers kept him in power for an entire extra year. And when the government was eventually voted out of office in general elections, the electoral process dragged on for another five months as a rigging machinery kicked in to keep him in office.

The party has since seen a fight for control. All three candidates for party leader have said that they are satisfied with the systems in place for a free, fair and free from fear election process.

The trio – Joseph Harmon, Aubrey Norton and Dr. Richard Van-West Charles – have all reposed full confidence in the Chief Elections Officer Vincent Alexander.

During a briefing at Legacy House, South Ruimveldt Gardens on Thursday, Alexander called attention to the fact that the congress is being held in the “new normal” – the COVID-19 pandemic.

As such it will be a hybrid congress and elections. Linked by a command center at Congress Place, there will be 13 polling stations across the country, four in Region Four and one in each in the other nine Administrative Regions.

Some 3, 000 delegates are set to vote during these elections which are contested by a high level of youth members of the PNC/R.

Alexander said the voters’ list was prepared after much scrutiny and will see voting between 11:00 hrs and 19:00 hrs on Saturday.

There will be a 09:00 hrs opening session which will be addressed by Party Chairman and acting Leader Volda Ann Lawrence and General Secretary Amna Ally.

Ally will have no role in the elections and incumbent leader David Granger will also be absent from the Congress. He will be in Cuba for medical attention.

Harmon Norton and Van-West Charles have all said that despite hiccups they are comfortable heading into the elections as the party approaches the signal moment of change.

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