KINGSTON, Jamaica - North West St. James MP Dr Horace Chang and Senator Robert “Bobby” Montague were elected Sunday as general secretary and chairman, respectively, of the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP).
Their election to these major positions in the party’s internal bureaucracy completed the leadership selection process, which began with the election of four Deputy Leaders at the November 18 annual conference.
Green-clad “Labourites” filled the premises and outside Belmont Road, although only 163 delegates were eligible to participate. But, despite the large crowd there was no tension, as the faithful calmly accepted the developments.
Dr Chang, a veteran from 1980 scored 86 votes to his sole rival, Joan Gordon Webley’s 58; while Montague scored 68 votes to beat his rivals – Edmund Bartlett, 41; Derrick Smith, 30; and Delroy Chuck, 5. Former General Secretary, Aundre Franklin, garnered 88 votes to defeat his rival, Senator Arthur Williams for the position of deputy chairman.
Four deputy general secretaries were elected in: Dr Andrew Wheatley, MP for South Central St. Catherine, former MP Dr St. Aubyn Bartlett, and former councillors Homer Davies and Audley Gordon.
MP for North Central St Andrew, Karl Samuda, and former MP Michael Stern were elected unopposed as Treasurer and Deputy Treasurer, after the withdrawal from the race of Phillip Henriques and MP Gregory Mair.
Five trustees were also selected in, Central St Catherine MP Olivia “Baby” Grange, who will also chair the public relations committee, Member of Parliament Rudyard Spencer (South East Clarendon), Oswald Harding, Enid Bennett and Dorothy Carter Bradford.
George Soutar, who headed the election monitoring team of lawyers, which also included senators Tom Tavares Finson and Kamina Johnson Smith, said that the election process followed the pattern laid down by the Electoral Office of Jamaica.
“I think we can take credit in this election. It was transparent, in all respects, and it was fair, and in the event the results have been accepted by everyone,” Soutar said.