Leader of the Alliance For Change, Khemraj Ramjattan, has made it clear that he will not be pulling out of the race for the position.
The AFC hosts its Congress this coming Saturday at Vreed-en-Hoop.
Mr. Ramjattan has been nominated for the top post in the party, along with former Leader, Raphael Trotman and current Vice Chairman, Moses Nagamootoo.
If he wins the elections, it will mark his third term as Party Leader. Some AFC members believe he should not be running again for the post.
However, Ramjattan does not intend to withdraw from the race and told News Source on Thursday that he is very confident of retaining the top leadership position in the party and will accept the nomination.
“There is no exclusionary rule that prevents me from running again and that is why we did what we did in the formulation of it. But if you were to do that and make it exclusionary, 12 out of the 16 names would have to come off”, Ramjattan said.
He said it would be “undemocratic” to prevent the membership from having a leader of their choice”. Mr. Ramjattan noted that persons who may be playing up the issue, need to pay attention to the AFC’s constitution and while change of leadership is a necessity, it should not exclude anyone who wants to run for the leadership position.
Mr. Ramjattan said he has received good support in the nomination and believes that he will be returned as party leader. He said he has been a good leader and has led the party well.
According to the AFC’s Constitution, “The various senior positions of the AFC, including those in the National Executive, Regions and Groups ought to be rotated as far as is possible so that no member is allowed to serve more than two consecutive terms in the same office, so as to ensure a broader activism in leadership positions by the membership.”
In a statement last weekend, the party said the Constitution does not make it mandatory for such rotation and leaves room for the membership to nominate or elect leaders to continue in a post for a longer period, adding that “the larger membership may want this recognition of the experience and expertise of certain leaders, and in the interest of the unity of the party’s leadership”.
However, Raphael Trotman, who is a co-founder of the AFC and a former Leader said although the word “ought” was used instead of “shall”, the framers of the constitution clearly wanted the rotation process to be in place.