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Feb 18, 2005

PUP Party chair explains voting process

Story PictureIn addition to the competition for the two deputy party leader positions, nominations have also been received for deputy national Campaign Manager and Chairman of the PR Committee. Francis Fonseca, the PUP Party Chairman, told news five today that while the National Council is expected to make the selections for these posts on Saturday, if this does not happen, the delegates attending the convention in Cayo on Sunday will make the final determination.

Francis Fonseca, PUP Party Chairman
?If the matter is not settled on Saturday and there is a need for a vote at the National Party Convention on Sunday, then we have every constituency with delegates that are assigned to the convention. And those delegates are determined by the number of votes that each representative from their constituency received in the last election. For example in my case in Freetown, where I got some twelve hundred votes in the last election, I will then have one delegate to be representative at the National Convention for every one hundred votes that I got. So I will have twelve delegates from Freetown. And all those delegates from every constituency will then have an opportunity to vote at the National Convention if the need arises. Obviously, if the matter is settled at the National Party Council then those names that the National Party Council recommends to the National Convention will then be ratified on Sunday.?

Chairman Fonseca also commented on the press release issued by the PUP Lake Independence and Albert Committees which appeals for greater representation at the conventions. Fonseca says their recommendations may be worth considering as the party heads towards the National Convention this November.

Francis Fonseca
?We?re being guided by the constitution of the part. So we are following the constitution. But I am certainly sensitive to the criticisms that are being made. I believe that there is room for improvement in the entire process. I believe we have to work very hard between now, this convention and the next convention to make sure that we provide an opportunity for greater participation to make the process more open, more transparent and to ensure that it?s more democratic and that the membership of the party feel that they have a greater stake in the selection of the leaders of the party. So I think there is merit in that criticism. But the fact is that we are being guided by the rules that apply now and we are following those rules. And the truth is that the people who are coming to the National Party Council and the delegates who are appointed to the National Convention are very representative of the party and they are chosen in a very open way at their constituency branch level. So we believe it?s a very democratic process as it applies now. But obviously there is room for improvement.?

Although it may be the quietest race in the PUP Party Executive, the office of Chairman of the Public Relations Committee does have two contenders, Bill Lindo and Yasser Musa.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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