8 July 2017: Melbourne solicitor Tonnou WG Ghothane has become the newest leader of Nepalese diaspora in Australia.
The CEO of TWGG International, a migration agency that operates off Melbourne CBD, was elected the president of Non-Resident Nepalese Association (NRNA) Australia in a nationwide election held today.
The not-for-profit organisation follows a rigorous democratic practice to hold its biennial polls. This year it was complete with a twelve-member Election Commission headed by Canberra economist Dr Krishna Hamal.
According to Dr Hamal, Mr Ghothane’s closest competitor from Brisbane, Swotantra Pratap Shah, lost the battle by a difference of mere five votes.
Mr Ghothane is not new to the globally present organisation. He was the secretary of NRNA Australia for 2015-2017 tenure.
He will head the Australian chapter, called the National Coordination Council, for a period of two years, until 2019.
Professionally, Mr Ghothane is a Solicitor and Officer of the Supreme Court of Victoria. He also holds a Bachelor of Business from Swinburn University and Graduate Certificate in Immigration Law and Practice from Victoria University. He has been in the industry since 2007.
Dr Hamal said there was an unprecedented turnout of voters held in major capital cities of Australia, the highest being in Northern Territory, 92 %.
Brisbane engineer Narayan Koirala was elected General Secretary. Mr Koirala holds a Bachelor of Computer Engineering and is currently working with Queensland’s Department of Transport and Main Roads. He beat his only rival candidate Raju Manandhar from Sydney.
Dave Gurung was elected as the secretary for the two-year term.
Dila Kharel from Sydney, longtime associate of NRNA Australia who runs accountancy firm INNOVATIVE off Sydney’s Pitt Street, interestingly received an unbelievable 777 votes despite the fact that he had withdrawn his candidacy for General Secretary days before the election day.
Mr Ghothane will take over from Sydney man Surendra Sigdel, also a migration industry insider.
There were a total 8244 eligible voters in today’s election.
This article has been updated 9July17 12:35 hrs