Donald Ramotar (born 22 October 1950) is a Guyanese politician who has been President of Guyana since December 2011. He has been the General Secretary of the People's Progressive Party (PPP) since 1997.
Ramotar joined the PPP in 1967 and was first elected to the PPP Central Committee in 1979; he joined the PPP Executive Committee in 1983. He received a degree in economics from the University of Guyana. From 1988 to 1993, he was International Secretary of the Guyana Agricultural Workers' Union. In the 1992 election, in which the PPP under Cheddi Jagan won power for first time in decades, Ramotar was elected to the National Assembly of Guyana; he was continuously re-elected thereafter. He was designated as the PPP's Executive Secretary in 1993. Following Jagan's death in March 1997, Ramotar was unanimously elected to succeed him as the PPP's General Secretary on March 29, 1997.
At the PPP's 29th Congress, he was re-elected to its Central Committee on August 2, 2008, receiving the fourth-highest number of votes (637). Following the Congress, he was re-elected by the Central Committee as General Secretary on August 12, 2008, without opposition; he was also elected to the editorial board of the PPP paper Thunder on this occasion.
On 4 April 2011, the PPP Central Committee chose Ramotar as the party's presidential candidate for the November 2011 election. The decision was unanimous; the other candidates withdrew and thereby obviated the need for a vote by secret ballot. The government announced on 28 April 2011 that Ramotar had been appointed to the post of Political Adviser to President Bharrat Jagdeo; previously Ramotar had held no official position in the administration. The opposition criticized the appointment; it argued that the government was merely reacting to criticism that it effectively sponsored Ramotar's candidacy by including him on official trips, and therefore was giving him an official job in order to legitimize the situation. The government argued that Ramotar's inclusion on official trips was acceptable because the government was implementing the policies of the ruling party, led by Ramotar.
The election was held on 28 November 2011, and Ramotar was declared the winner when results were announced on 1 December. However, the PPP fell one seat short of a parliamentary majority, winning 32 out of 65 seats, meaning that Ramotar would serve as President while two opposition parties would together hold a majority of seats in the National Assembly. Ramotar expressed disappointment with his party's failure to win a majority, but he said that "the electorate has spoken and we have to work with what we have". He was sworn in as President on 3 December 2011.
- "Ramotar gets unanimous selection as PPP Presidential Candidate", Kaieteur News, 5 April 2011.
- Kwesi Isles, "PPP/C's Ramotar declared Guyana's new president", Demerara Waves, 1 December 2011.
- "History of PPP", PPP website.
- Press release on Central Committee election, August 3, 2008.
- "Donald Ramotar re-elected General Secretary of PPP", Guyana Times, August 13, 2008.
- "PPP General Secretary, Executive Committee elected", PPP press statement, August 12, 2008.
- "Presidential favourite Donald Ramotar wins candidacy to lead the PPP/C in the 2011 elections", The Guyana Press, 4 April 2011.
- "Ramotar's presidential advisor appointment is back-door campaign financing - opposition", Demerara Waves, 28 April 2011.
- Denis Chabrol, "Ethnic Indian candidate wins presidency in Guyana", Agence France-Presse, 1 December 2011.
- "Ramotar sworn in as seventh Executive President", Stabroek News, 3 December 2011.