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Ryan proposes standard system for party polls

Monday, May 19, 2014
Members of the People's National Movement wait in line to cast their vote at St Anthony's College polling station during the party's historic one-man-one-vote internal election yesterday. PHOTO: MICHEAL BRUCE

Political scientist Prof Selwyn Ryan says there should be a standard system for the supervision of internal party elections and the Elections and Boundaries Commission (EBC) should have a limited supervisory role. Ryan spoke with reporters briefly during his visit to St Anthony’s College, which was the Diego Martin West polling station for the PNM’s one-man-one-vote national executive elections.



It was the first time in the party’s 58-year-history that its executive was being elected under a system of one man one vote. The party used the delegate system previously. Ryan said yesterday’s election “certainly has my interest. I thought I should come and see what is happening, especially since other parties are planning elections.” The Congress of the People and the United National Congress—two parties in the People’s Partnership Government—are among other parties expected to have internal elections this year.


And in the wake of that, Ryan said there was need for a standard election process. “My feeling is that there should be a standardised process partly supervised by the EBC.” Ryan said his interest in the poll was related to two issues: the one-man-one-vote system and the contest between Rowley and Beckles-Robinson. Ryan declined to predict the winner of the election, which was being contested by slates led by Rowley and Beckles-Robinson. There were several complaints of election irregularities by the respective slates yesterday.


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