by Linda Straker
Minor changes were made to the new executive of the National Democratic Congress, including the electing of three new persons as floor members, during Sunday’s convention at the Grenville Secondary School.
“The delegates elected the floor members, and they are persons who have experience at the constituency level, so they come with a wealth of experience from that level and will now making contributions directly to the national executive,” said Patrick Simmons who was re-elected to serve as General-Secretary. The three floor members are: Frederick Parker, Dale Simon and Ian Thomas.
Simmons will be assisted by three others who also come with some experience at serving on the national executive. Moving up the ranks from floor member to assistance general secretary is Elwyn McQuilkin who responsibility for the Eastern Zone. Ali Dowden who at times speaks as the voice for the NDC youth was elected as Assistant General-Secretary for the Western zone, and Wade Phillip who was a member of the convention planning committee was elected as Assistant General Secretary for the Southern Zone.
Describing Sunday’s convention as one where supporters renew their commitment to the growth of the party, Simmons said that the executive was happy with the turnout of people who came not just for the morning session, but also for the rally which was held at the Victoria Park. The guest speaker was Antigua and Barbuda Finance Minister, Harold Lovell.
“The turnout was just about what we anticipated. There were two to three thousand persons who came out showing support — these were people who paid they own way to be there; these were people who believe that we can make at difference,” he said.
The NDC national executive comprises forty persons, but less than half are elected at the annual convention, as the others represent other arms, or serve in a honorary capacity. The other executive members elected on Sunday were: Nazim Burke as Political Leader and Joseph Andall as his Deputy; the chairman is Dr George Vincent, while deputy is Glen Noel; the treasurer is Merle Byer while the Public Relations Officer is Franka Bernardine, and her assistant is Randal Robinson. The recording secretary is Vincent Roberts and his assistant is Petra Williams.