By Phurbu Thinley
New TYC executive members pose for media after their election, phayul photo: David Huang
Dharamsala, August 8: Tsewang Rigzin was on Sunday re-elected as president of the Tibetan Youth Congress for the second consecutive term here at the concluding day of its 14th General Body Meeting.
Heading TYC since September 2007, Mr Tsewang's new term will now extend through August 2013. He served as the president of the Portland/Vancouver regional chapter of the TYC before first being elected as the president of the TYC during its 13th GBM in 2007.
"As the newly elected president of the Tibetan Youth Congress I once again want to declare and reiterate my unyielding faith in the restoration of Tibet's lost independence," Mr Tsewang said in delivering his acceptance speech.
"In working for the cause of Tibet, we must not and cannot afford to forget the supreme sacrifices being made by brave Tibetans inside Tibet," he said.
Founded in 1970, the Tibetan Youth Congress is the largest NGO in the exile Tibetan community seeking complete independence for Tibet, a radical position opposed to the 'Middle Way' approach as proposed by the Dalai Lama and adopted as an official policy by the Tibetan Government-in-Exile.
Mr Tsewang also repeatedly appealed members both at the central and regional levels to continue to show resolute determination and sincerity to work towards the cause of Tibet and its people.
"It is my earnest appeal here today to all the members not to let partisan feelings and individual differences to come in the way of organisation's larger goal of regaining Tibet's independence," he said.
Describing TYC as an indispensable organisation for the Tibetan freedom struggle, Mr Tsewang said its members must not fail the trust and confidence placed by so many Tibetans both in and outside Tibet in the organisation's work.
His appeal echoes the rifts that have surfaced within the working of the organization’s central executive members, both during the previous and current executive body.
Elected for a term of three years, the executive body, called the Central Executive Committee (CENTREX), supervises the entire functioning of TYC, provides guidance to the 'Regional Working Committees' and represents TYC in all national and international forums.
Over 170 executive members from 47 regional chapters based in Bhutan, India and Nepal, and members representing chapters in United States, Canada, Taiwan and Europe took part in the seven-day general body meeting, which began on August 2.
The GBM is the highest decision making body of TYC. The body elects not less than ten members for the central executive body.
Mr Tsewang and his newly elected team members will begin their new term next month.
Dhondup Lhadar, who is currently serving as the organisation's general secretary, was elected to serve as the new Vice President in the next executive body. Tenzin Choekyi, a former TCY CENTREX member and a member of Dharamsala RTYC, was declared elected as the new General Secretary.
The General Body Meeting also re-elected Tenzin Norsang, Tenzin Yangzom, Penpa Tsering and Kunchok Yamphel, who are currently serving as the organisation's Joint Secretary, Secretary for International Affairs, Organisation Secretary and Public Relation Officer respectively.
Tenzin Dolma of Delhi RTYC, Yeshi Tharchen of Deckyi Ling (Dehradun) RTYC, and Jigme of Varanasi RTYC are other newly elected CENTREX members.
The CENTREX members are normally required to work in TYC’s head office based here in Dharamsala, the seat of the Tibetan Government in Exile and hometown of the exiled Tibetan leader, the Dalai Lama.