Ramjattan new AFC leader, Hughes Chairman
…as Trotman exits
The Alliance For Change (AFC) has named attorney-at-law Khemraj Ramjattan as that party’s new leader following elections at its Third National Conference yesterday.
This was following an address earlier in the day by Raphael Trotman who indicated that he will not be contesting the elections after being at the helm of the party since its formation prior to the 2006 General and Regional Elections.
However, Trotman, the Speaker of the National Assembly, made it clear that he is not retiring or leaving any time soon. He will continue serving as a Committee Member.
Prominent attorney-at-law, Nigel Hughes, will be the party’s new Chairman. Both Hughes and Ramjattan would have run unopposed during the conference held at Vryheid’s Lust, East Coast Demerara. Ramjattan was the former Chairman.
Former top-ranking member of the People’s Progressive Party, Moses Nagamootoo, is the new Vice-Chairman.
David Patterson is the party’s new General Secretary after a close contest with Sixtus Edwards.
Also elected as Committee Members were Cathy Hughes, Dominic Gaskin, Gerhard Ramsaroop, Sixtus Edwards, Cindy Sookdeo, Valerie Lowe, Veerasammy Ramaya, Trevor Williams, Dr. Rohan Somar, Denise Walcott and Michael Carrington.
Ramjattan, Trotman and Sheila Holder, who passed away last November in the US, were founders of the AFC, which in its coming out party in 2006, snagged five Parliamentary seats.
In November, last, the party bettered this by two and together with the 10-party coalition, A Partnership For National Unity (APNU), currently holds a one-seat advantage over the ruling People’s Progressive Party/Civic.
Hughes is a prominent attorney known to be outspoken on the political scene and has been a close advisor to the party since its formation.
Ramjattan in his short address to the delegates called on government through the Minister of Home Affairs Clement Rohee, to own up for the July 18 shooting deaths of three Linden protesters.
During his remarks at the conference yesterday, the outgoing leader, Trotman, explained that his heavy work as Speaker of the House was the main reason he has decided not to run again. “Firstly, I believe that I cannot provide the strong and steady representation and leadership that the executive and members need whilst performing and fulfilling my duties as Speaker because of the nature of that office and its unending demands on me.
Secondly, I am of the firm conviction that a political party and moreso the Alliance For Change, like a living organism, must grow, must adapt, must evolve continuously if it is to remain relevant and connected to its members and the wider society as a whole,”
He urged for training of young soldiers within the party to prepare for national elections which may come before 2016.