AFC urges PPP to go back to parliament to extend life of government

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Minister of Public Security Khemraj Ramjattan

…says diplomats’ statement unfortunate

THE Alliance For Change (AFC) said that the position of the U.S., UK and EU is unfortunate since the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) in its consequential orders did not state that elections must be held on or before September, 18, 2019, but instead it must be held at the earliest opportunity once stakeholders are ready.

This is according to Leader of the AFC Khemraj Ramjattan during a press conference on Friday at the AFC Headquarters, Railway Embankment, Kitty.

“We respect the diplomats’ desire and right to express their opinion on the issue, we noted that Canada has stayed away from signing on, we also note that the opposition is utilising this joint statement to up the ante of protest,” Ramjattan said.

He said that the joint statement did not say anything about the coalition government being “illegal.” “The U.S., UK and European Union will remain extremely cordial friends of the AFC and the coalition government,” he said.

Ramjattan said the only way to resolve the issue is to “call elections as soon as possible,” and the AFC welcomes the GECOM Chair’s announcement that credible election can be delivered by the end of February, 2020.

“It will also welcome an announcement of President David Granger on a date for general and regional elections,” he said.
The party, he said, is of the view that all constitutional requirements have been adhered to by the President and Government of Guyana thus far. He called on the opposition PPP to ensure formal constitutionality and to support a two-thirds majority in the National Assembly as is required by article 106:7 to extend government’s life, since an election timeframe has been set.

“Government has always wanted an extension since the judgement by the CCJ, but we were constantly hearing the opposition leader saying that they would not want to do it; it is timely now in view of the fact that an election timeline has been set,” Ramjattan said.

AFC Treasurer Dominic Gaskin said now an election timeframe has been set, the opposition should support the extension of the government’s life. “Why would they not want to grant a parliamentary extension and risk the country being exposed to all sorts of interpretations as to the legality of the government and all of that? Why would any responsible political party knowing the circumstances, want to place our country in such an unfavourable position by not granting the extension based now on GECOM’s earliest possible elections date?” Gaskin querried.