Understanding the PNP’s delegate system

The majority of the People’s National Party delegates will vote in the presidential poll on September 7. The delegate will choose whether to keep current president Dr Peter Phillips or give his challenger, Peter Bunting, a go at the presidency.

Dr Peter Phillips (centre) is being challenge by Peter Bunting (below) for the presidency of the People’s National Party.

This is what you need to know about the delegate system.

  • The delegates will come from the party’s groups islandwide and its National Executive Council (NEC).
  • A total of approximately 2,800 delegates will select the party president at the special delegates’ conference.
  • The NEC — which is the PNP’s highest decision-making body outside of the annual conference — will provide nearly 350 delegates for the run-off.
  • A recognised constituency is entitled to two NEC members, and one from each unrecognised constituency.
  • To become a recognised a constituency requires a minimum of 20 groups, plus a Youth Organisation and a Women’s group. Groups are the small territorial bodies that exist in the constituencies and hold meetings on a regular basis to discuss various issues.
  • The party structure is also divided into six regions, with one delegate per constituency. For example, in the party’s Region Five, there are eight constituencies. That region is entitled to no more than eight delegates. Depending on the state of a constituency, in a particular region, no delegate may be chosen.
  • PNP affiliates such as the National Workers’ Union (NWU) and the youth/adult professional arm the Patriots are also among the main sources of delegates.
  • The NWU, a trade union affiliated to the party, provides at least 50 delegates, the Patriots 30 and Parish Councillors, who are not NEC members, are automatic delegates. The party has no say in who are delegates from affiliates.
  • The union’s selection criteria specify that a delegate has to be a Comrade, a fully paid-up member of the party, a member of the NWU, or a worker representative who “adds value to the union and its work”.