By Fareeza Haniff
[www.inewsguyana.com] – The governing People’s Progressive Party (PPP) says the position of the Deputy Speaker of the House of Assembly should be taken away from the Opposition and given to the PPP.
This sentiment was expressed by the Party’s General Secretary, Clement Rohee at a news conference on Monday, June 09 as a part of a list of steps that the Opposition needs to take if there will be shared governance.
The other steps include the re – arrangement of all Parliamentary Committees so that the PPP could have a “proportionate amount of seats corresponding to its representation;” the APNU, AFC should not link the passage of the Anti Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Amendment Bill to any other legislation and finally, the Opposition must respect the fact that the government was constitutionally elected.
“These are the first steps they must take in order to create an atmosphere that would be conducive to any formal movement in terms of discussions on this matter,” Rohee told the news conference.
Recently, Leader of the APNU David Granger had called on the PPP to abandon its “winner takes all” attitude and embrace inclusive governance.
In response, Rohee said, “These are good political sound bites which the APNU is now seeking to capitalize on but which in fact are ideas and proposals advanced by the PPP decades ago but were unconditionally rejected by the PNC. This call by Granger is nothing short of shameless hypocrisy.”
According to Rohee, an atmosphere for inclusive governance does not exist currently.
“Such an atmosphere clearly does not exist at the moment through no fault of the PPP nor the PPP/C government but wholly by the inflexible stance taken by the combined opposition parliamentary parties when in the aftermath of the November 2011 elections they consorted with each other to deny the PPP which obtained the largest bloc of votes both the position of Speaker and Deputy Speaker.”
He pointed out that even though the PPP in previous elections won overall parliamentary majorities, the Party never took both positions of Speaker and Deputy Speaker, with the latter position always going to the PNC with the full support of the PPP.