Results of the 2nd Annual Party Congress
As LANDS turned two years old on the 11th of November, we convened our 2nd Annual Party Congress. While an informal physical meet-up was held in Kingston, Jamaica, most of the proceedings of the Party Congress were held online to facilitate persons in rural areas and the diaspora. In the year since the last Party Congress, LANDS has grown to encompass 6 units. Our internal processes have become more streamlined and efficient and, although there are still improvements to be made, we are now confident in our ability to recruit and expand as an organisation.
We have received messages of solidarity from outside the organisation, including from the Embassy of the Republic of Cuba in Jamaica and the Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in Jamaica. It is encouraging and extremely satisfying to have our work and commitment to progress recognised by others. In addition to this, the longer document contains addresses from members and supporters.
Draft 10 of the constitution has now been implemented. Pan-Africanism now features as one of the party’s ideologies. The constitutional amendment process has been shortened from 5 steps to 3 steps. Community units will now be referred to as ‘people’s units’; these units are meant to be non-political and less ideologically rigid than cadre units, and will discuss the same issues but will be expected to express views from a personal angle rather than a policymaking one. The new constitution has also changed the minimum number of members in the Politburo from one to three, emphasising our commitment to collective leadership. A section on assimilating small organisations into LANDS has been added. Complaints against a member cannot be dismissed if they involve sexual violence or criminal charges even if a Special Disciplinary Committee cannot be assembled in time. We have also adopted gender-neutral language; the role of ‘Chairman’ will now be referred to as ‘Chairperson” in the constitution, but someone may still go by ‘Chairman’ or ‘Chairwoman’ as personal preference. Further clarification and distinction of the roles of different membership types, unit types, bodies and titles have also been made.
Elections were held to fill the 3 seats on the Central Committee as well as the sole seat in the Politburo, i.e. the Chairman.
For the Central Committee, 5 candidates appeared on the ballot and 23 delegates voted. Christophe Simpson, Christina Ivey and Rayon Cameron were elected to the Central Committee with 91.3%, 91.3%, and 78.3% approval respectively. This newly elected Central Committee is now discussing the appointment of the Secretariat.
For the Politburo election, only one seat was available since the old constitution was used; whichever candidate garnered the highest approval rating would be elected Chairman. Two candidates appeared on the ballot, and 23 delegates voted. Christophe Simpson was elected Chairman with 95.7% approval. The second place candidate, Rayon Cameron, received 56.5% approval.
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