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The newly reconstituted board (2023-2026) of the Ethnic Relations Commission, (ERC), convened on Thursday March 23, 2023 and will commence work shortly to facilitate its plan of interaction with citizens from all ethnic groups throughout the country, in an effort to strengthen its constitutional mandate.
The new board is headed by Chairman Shaykh Moeen Ul Hack who also represents the Muslim constituency. Commissioner Charles Ogle, who is representing the Private Sector constituency was elected as Deputy Chairman, but is not yet sworn in. Commissioner Reverend Rodwell Porter, representing the Christian bodies, is also not yet sworn in.
The Commissioners who took their oath of office on Tuesday are:
- Shaykh Moeen Ul Hack – Muslim bodies.
- Pandit Krishn Deo Sharma – Hindu bodies.
- Norris Witter – Labour (Trade Union) bodies.
- Neaz Subhan – Indo-Guyanese bodies.
- Dwayne Adams – Youth bodies.
- Deon Dick – African Guyanese bodies.
- Chandroutie Saran – Women’s bodies.
- Ashton Simon – Indigenous bodies.
The commission, in a release, said the board is working to develop an action plan for its three-year term in support of the ERC’s mandate to “promote harmony and good relations” among all Guyanese. The formation of the constitutional body followed agreement on the need for the Commission by both the opposition and government sides in parliament over two decades ago.
The Commission is guided by its 24 functions and its secretariat consists of a Media Monitoring, Public Education and Awareness and Investigation Units.