IFJ Congress Elects President

The IFJ World Congress, meeting in Dublin Castle, yesterday re-elected Jim Boumelha (NUJ, UK & Ireland) as the President for another three years.

The two candidates that stood for the Presidential election were: Philippe Leruth, a respected Belgian journalist who has been the Vice-President of the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) for the past nine years, and Jim Boumelha, who was first elected as President at the Moscow Congress in 2007. Before then he was IFJ Honorary Treasurer for two cycles.

In a close vote, Mr Boumelha was elected with 191 votes, against 178 votes for Mr Leruth (AGJPB, Belgium). There were 2 abstentions.  The two candidates agreed that they would not contest the vote.

Due to a discrepancy in the number of votes cast, the Presidium asked delegates to vote on whether another ballot should be held.186 voted against a re-vote, 139 voted for a re-vote, and there were 2 abstentions.  

As a result, the Presidium confirmed that no re-vote would take place, and Mr Boumelha had been officially reelected.  

Following the decision, the delegates from the German union (DJV) and Canadian union (CWA-SCA) today decided to leave the World Congress in protest at the procedures used to elect the President. The German union (Ver.di) issued a declaration claiming that the procedures were "not compliant with democratic standards."   This declaration was later supported by 14 other countries.

The Congress then proceeded with its business with re-elected President Jim Boumelha addressing the Congress in relation to the conduct of future ballot.


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The IFJ represents more than 600.000 journalists in 134 countries