The race for the leadership of the People’s National Congress Reform party (PNCR) got underway on Thursday, and party executive Aubrey Norton is leading the nominations, having reportedly garnered more than 50 per cent of the endorsements submitted thus far.
PNC groups from across the country have begun submitting their nominations in support of the candidates who are contending for various leadership posts in the party. These include Leader, Chairman, Vice Chair, Treasurer, and 15 executives for Regional and District Secretaries.
According to General Secretary of the party, Amna Ally, the nominations process will run until today, then it will close off.
However, this publication understands that Norton has already racked up support and endorsements from most of the party’s groups as well as from senior party members.
When contacted on Thursday, Norton indicated that the overwhelming support has put him ahead of his contenders – Opposition Leader Joseph Harmon and PNC Executive Richard Van West-Charles – for the party’s leadership post.
“From the information I’m getting, I have more than 80 per cent of the nominations… supporting me thus far. I’m doing extremely well in the nominations,” he related, noting that his campaign had seen him engaging the party’s support base across various regions.
In fact, he has received the support of most of the PNC groups in Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica) – the largest voting district – and Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) – his home region.
Norton, who has dubbed himself the front-runner for this post, and had anticipated leading the race, reiterated his confidence in emerging as the next PNCR Leader at the upcoming Biennial Congress on December 11.
“Yes. I’m confident I will win the party’s leadership,” he declared.
The PNCR – the leading party in the A Partnership for National Unity faction of the APNU/AFC Coalition Opposition – has been embroiled in an internal divisive power struggle since the party’s loss at the 2020 General and Regional Elections.
Hence, there was mounting pressure for Congress to be held to elect new leadership, including incumbent PNCR Leader, former President David Granger, who will not be contesting for the post.
At the party’s last biennial congress in 2018, Granger was reelected leader after the post was uncontested.