ODESSA, TX – The leader of Odessa's NAACP has major complaints regarding a candidate forum held by the Ector County Republican Women on Wednesday.
According to CBS7, on September 17, Gene O. Collins, President of the Odessa NAACP has expressed that he belives the candidate forum held for on Wednesday was racist and divisive.
"The Political Forum held on yesterday by the Ector County Republican Women for the upcoming Odessa City Council Elections was organized to intentionally and discriminately excluded four African American candidates from participating. Since all local city council and mayoral elections are non-partisan and there is no party affiliation requirement given when filing for the local offices, we, the Odessa Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, feel that the ECRW has violated the public trust and is propitiating a spirit of division and discrimination in the city of Odessa during a time when the citizens are trying their best to pull together for the good of the entire community. We must be better than this." stated Collins.
The forum was held for the upcoming city council election which will be held in November. There are currently 15 candidates on the ballot and eight of them were invited to the event.
A spokeswoman for the ECRW said that club bylaws don't allow non-republican candidates to attend meetings.