Deputy Chairman Stefania Signorelli promptly opened the meeting and thanked all of the volunteers who dedicate their free time for the progress of the Italian Conservative Group. She praised their hard work of canvassing and noted their dedication, no matter the weather.
Special Guest The Right Hon. Mark Field MP, Minister of State for the Foreign Office and first supporter of the Italian Conservatives Group said, UK is leaving the EU, but we will remain close friends of the EU going forwards. “We have some values in common,” he said.
Field continued, remarking that Dr.Tania Mathias was a much respected MP and that the “Italian Conservatives Group will support her coming back at the earliest opportunity.” A statement that received much applause.
The focus for the meeting was:
- To take stock of where the Group was; the goals achieved and those in the future
- To announce the members of the new Executive Council and the Members of the Committee
- To thank all the delegates of the other Groups and affiliates of the Conservatives Party who brilliantly supported the Italian Conservative Group over the past three years
- Excuses of absence received from Hon. President Maurizio Bragagni, Honorary Vice-president Domenico Meliti and Patrons Lord Leigh of Hurley, Kemi Badenoch, MP, Zac Goldsmith, MP and Dominic Johnson.
Chairman and founder Christian Vinante Giovannini was most gracious in his welcoming of our newly appointed Honorary President and Host Alberto Costa MP, and in his appreciation of Stefania Signorelli’s hard work at putting together events in prime locations.
He also thanked (Honorary president) Dr Maurizio Bragagni, for providing a great stand at last year’s AGM in Manchester, remarking that Dr Bragagni is without comparison when it comes to promoting and supporting the Italian Conservative Group mentioning also that this Meeting has been held so close to the crucial 3th of May local elections to Galvanize Activists and Supporters.
Our Honourable President Alberto Costa, a proud son of Italian immigrants, Member of the British Parliament and Knight of the Order of the Star of Italy shared a story that encapsulates the goals of the Italian Conservative Group and the Conservative party.
“Yesterday, a group of school children came to see me. And a young 16 years old girl asked me, “Mr. Costa, how can we get involved in Democracy?”
After explaining the meaning of the word Democracy to this young girl, Costa told her that “the very fact that you’ve come to Parliament, the very fact that you’re engaging, the very fact that you’re asking the question, is already a step in the right path.”
He continued, “It is my honour to have been selected by you as the Honorary President. Many years ago, when I was growing up in Scotland, in Glasgow, I didn’t think I’d be standing in Committee Room 14, addressing fellow Italians and friends of Italy, supporters of Italy who have come here this evening, and this very room, Committee Room 14.
“When I was first elected three years ago, I was standing in the back, under the green monitor, the room was packed full of conservative MPs, and standing here…was David Cameron, who had won the first conservative majority since 1992.”
Costa went on to explain his support of Dr Tania Mathias, remarking how important it was to have people with her skills, ability and measured tone sit on the green benches in Parliament.
He also prised the 4 Italian Candidates for the 4th of May local elections that were present at the meeting: Sara Gerzari, Mavie Clare Ambrosino, Salvatore Murtas and Giovannini.
He also assured those of the Italian community in the UK who were not naturalised that he would make every effort to ensure they would have their rights extended not just pre Brexit, but during the implementation period.
Dr Tania Mathias, who speaks fluent Italian, made a speech in Italian saying “It’s always a pleasure to be with the Italian Conservatives Group. The support that the Conservative party received from the Italian Conservatives Group. was crucial during the Brexit negotiations, but more importantly, when the negotiations are completed, the Italian Conservatives Group. will continue to be an important organisation.”
Italian Conservatives Group Patron Dr. Tania Mathias was overwhelmed with the support she heard from current MPs and the Italian Conservatives Group…perhaps a sign that we could have her back in Parliament soon?
With an extensive list of international awards in marketing achieved in both the public and private sectors, “born and bred” Conservative, Dr Marcio Borlenghi Fasano is a crucial element to Italian Conservatives Group’s strategy going forward. His expertise will play a key part in the success of conservative candidates backed by the Italian Conservatives Group.
Dr Fasano – confirmed as a member of the Italian Conservatives Group Executive Committee- quickly showed his grasp of what the Italian Conservatives Group and The Conservatives needs by explaining the importance of keeping up with technology and the importance of using language that is clear, plain and concise to engage with the youth…our future voters.
He noted that conservatives tend to use a very colloquial language…making it difficult to engage with the younger generation and pointed out the Labour’s use of “plain language” helps them to connect with the youth more easily than with conservatives.
Sara Gezdari the selected candidate for Richmond Council communicated the apologise of absence of our long standing Patron and friend Zac Goldsmith MP
Mavie Clare Ambrosino spoke about the values of the Conservative party, which has ‘community’ at its core. Italians are naturally community centred, natural engagers and communicators. It is therefore crucial to connect with those Italians in London and more broadly the UK who could make a true difference at the elections. Clare then concluded by reading a letter on behalf of our newly elected Hon. President Dr Maurizio Bragagni, who was unfortunately not able to attend.
In closing, the vice Chairman of the main Conservative Party Rehman Chishti MP passed by and briefly thanked the Italian Conservatives Group and noted that as a son of immigrants, like so many in that room, it’s important to never give up on their dreams.
During the event the founding Chairman Chris Vinante and the IC and Westminster Association Administrative Secretary James Cockram announced the new Committee:
Honorary President: Alberto Costa MP, Honorary President: Dr Maurizio Bragagni Honorary Vice President: Domenico Meliti
PATRONS: Kemi Badenoch MP, Zac Goldsmith MP, Robert Courts MP, Lord Leigh of Hurley, Dominic Johnson, Dr. Tania Mathias, Mary Mecleod.
MORE just to note:
Chairman: Christian Vinante Giovannini, Deputy Chairman: Stefania Signorelli, Vice Chairman Massimo Segalla, Hon. Secretary, Treasurer: James Cockram CLWCA ,Sara Gezdari (Richmond Area), Marcio Borlenghi Fasano Chief Strategist nand Sidcup Area Responsible, Dr Maurizio Bragagni, Domenico Meliti, Maeve Clare Ambrosino (Hammersmith and Fulham Area).
Valentina Marcolungo, Gianluca Vitelli, Bruno Giorgi, Gianni Ferrari, Hector Marchetti Urena, Salvatore Murtas, Paul Rota, Francesca Silvani, Alessandro Caffi, Sergio Mattioli, Alessia Cesana, Sabrina Boni, Patrizia Ilaria Sechi, Alessandra Perosa, Mario Trabucco, Ivan Ghiosso, Giorgio Buttironi, Alberto Orru.