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RPS explanation for Ash Soni's unprecedented departure

Some members requested clarification on how the president is elected, the society has said

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) has responded to members’ shock at president Ash Soni’s unprecedented departure by shedding more light on its internal workings.

The RPS announced last week that Mr Soni, who has held the post for two years, “will no longer be president” beyond the society’s next assembly meeting on July 19.

Following the announcement, “some members” had “asked for clarification of the process for choosing the president”, the RPS said yesterday (June 27).

The society explained that following a vote last week, its English Pharmacy Board elected five of its pharmacists to the RPS assembly. Mr Soni was not one of those re-elected to the assembly, and therefore could not remain president, the RPS stressed.

The five pharmacists who will now be representing England on the assembly – alongside English Pharmacy Board chair Sandra Gidley and vice chair Professor Claire Anderson – are Martin Astbury, Catherine Armstrong, David Carter, Sibby Buckle and outgoing RPS treasurer Sid Dajani.

"Never happened before"

Mr Soni told C+D last Saturday (June 25) that the scenario of a current RPS president being voted off the assembly had “never happened before”.

The RPS's explanation of its internal processes did not satisfy some pharmacists, who continued to question how the assembly had been elected (see below).


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