Thu | Sep 28, 2023

Socialist Int’l secretary general to address PNP conference

Published:Sunday | September 17, 2023 | 12:10 AM

Ghanaian lawyer Benedicta Lasi, the youngest and first woman elected secretary general of Socialist International, is the guest of honour at today’s public session of the People’s National Party’s (PNP’s) 85th annual conference at the National Arena.

Lasi, who has a long résumé of advocacy, consultancy and appetite for social justice, is expected to share the stage with PNP President Mark Golding at what is anticipated to be the PNP’s last and largest mass gathering before the country holds the long-overdue local government election.

The conference is being held under the theme ‘Time Come Now’, an upgrade indicating more urgency from the ‘Time Come’ tag under which the PNP has been campaigning.

Golding is expected to articulate his vision for the party, which lost 127,000 voters over two general-election cycles. It is also anticipated that he will make a pitch for the party’s return to state power, urging Comrades and undecided voters to buy into his vision.

His address comes months after Don Anderson polls put the party ahead of the JLP for the first time since 2015. But, with a poll by another entity showing the Jamaica Labour Party surging ahead by six points last week, he knows the party has work to do.

Lasi, 36, is the CEO of Socialist International, leading with Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, who is the president.

Socialist International is a worldwide organisation of political parties which seeks to establish democratic socialism and realise the ideals of socio-economic solidarity, environmental and socio-cultural justice across the world. It was formed in 1951 to replace the Labour and Socialist International, and currently includes 132 member parties and organisations from more than 100 countries which identify with social democracy, socialism, democratic socialism or labour-centred politics.

Socialist International is headquartered in London in the United Kingdom, where Lasi, who was elected in 2022 to serve a four-year term, is a lawyer, investment consultant, politician and member of the National Democratic Congress.

She is a partner at Edfields Attorneys, Ghana; a transaction advisor for Africa Investment Consortium; and a consultant at Fitch Advisory.

She has a master’s in economic policy management from the University of Ghana and a master’s in conflict, peace and security, from the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre.