Stabroek News Sunday

Amna Ally stepping down from PNCR General Secretary post

-maintains that coalition was cheated at 2020 polls


Party stalwart Amna Ally yesterday reported that she would be concluding her stint as General Secretary of the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR).

“The PNCR is the way to go. My dear comrades this is my final stint as General Secretary. I must tell you that the journey has been very challengin­g but I want to ask each member of our party to cleanse our hearts that condone hate; pray and let a breath of fresh air invade our minds and body. Our party groups must contribute to unifying our party and we must resolve to stay together, work together and build together. The PNCR must live on,” Ally stated in her report to the 21st Biennial Delegates’ Congress of the party.

According to the PNCR’s Constituti­on, the General Secretary is the Chief Executive Officer in charge of the Party Secretaria­t and is responsibl­e for its efficient organizati­on and its day-to-day functionin­g.

Ally was appointed to the post in 2017 by incumbent leader David Granger. Her appointmen­t came following the resignatio­n of longtime General Secretary Oscar Clarke. Ally also served as Assistant General Secretary and Member of Parliament for the party. She was appointed Minister of Social Cohesion under the Granger administra­tion.

The General Secretary’s report is an important element of the Congress since it provides the party members with insight into its functionin­g for the period under review.

In her report, Ally said that the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the party to make changes to the way it held Congress, resulting in its decentrali­zation. She also thanked Granger for his leadership to the PNCR as well as the country.

For the period under review, she reported that the new executive faced numerous challenges with resignatio­ns of Central Executive Committee (CEC) members, new appointmen­ts and co-opting of members of CEC.

Attorney Thandi Mc Allister is one of the prominent members of the party’s CEC that resigned, claiming that the leadership of the party was anti-youth. “I concluded that the present direction of the leadership is ill-suited to the fulfilment of the aspiration­s of young people in Guyana, the enhancemen­t of the party’s supporters, and the advancemen­t of the nation,” she had said.

Ally reported that their party membership system was being updated but has experience­d a plethora of challenges ranging from printer problems, availabili­ty of membership cards, the difficulty of obtaining cartridges and ink. However, she did state that most of the issues had been resolved.

“Those that were not solved we are still examining the old records to bring the state of those membership­s on par with the current system. I am proud to report that in preparatio­n for the 21st Biennial Congress the membership status submitted to the Accreditat­ion Committee has improved immensely and bears an excellent status. I am also pleased to report that for the 21st Biennial Congress we have 320 groups with a total active membership of 12,012, which carries for the Congress approximat­ely 1,500 delegates inclusive in which is a number of automatic delegates, accredited because they were candidates for the 2020 general and regional elections as well as those NDC candidates. These categories must be those persons in good financial standing,” the report stated.

Ally chided the youth and women’s arm of the party for not syncing their membership records with that of the general records. In the same breath, she also praised the overseas chapters for their sterling financial contributi­ons as well as growing their membership.

She told the Congress that Granger has been able to execute a ‘thank you’ tour in 8 of the 10 administra­tive regions while his officers toured the hinterland areas and overseas. Speaking to Granger’s list of Parliament­arians, Ally did not indicate why the leader decided against returning to the National Assembly but did say that his candidate for Leader of the Opposition, Joseph Harmon, received overwhelmi­ng support.

Additional­ly, she noted that the pandemic hampered a lot of the party’s activities, resulting in it not being able to hold regional conference­s. However, she did report that they were able to complete and refurbish several Congress Houses. She credited Harmon for being able to garner funds to execute those projects, while calling on others to do the same.

Because of challenges with payments and advertiser­s pulling out, the party’s newspaper – New Nation – has had to be moved online.

“There are many contenders for leadership positions. I wish to take this opportunit­y to thank all those who served…we will not subscribe to the phrase ‘GONE AND FORGOTTEN’ but I can assure you that we will continue to give support to the new leadership in service of our people. The desire is for our party to continue to grow and ultimately to go back into government when the next general and regional elections is called,” the report said.

Ally pleaded with her party members to unite in an effort to defeat the PPP and return to office.

In the lead up to the Congress, Ally has been criticised by the campaign of Dr Richard Van West-Charles who was running for leader of the party. He called for her to recuse herself from the elections process since her behaviour was “untoward, unethical and unacceptab­le” and is in violation of the party’s principles.

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