Citing the fact that the party stopped keeping promises and that the leaders have become selfish, former Prime Ministerial Representative of Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne), Gobin Harbhajan, has resigned from the Alliance for Change (AFC).
In a letter dated August 28, 2020, and addressed to the General Secretary of the party, David Patterson, Harbhajan said “When the party successfully took office in 2015, I diligently served and supported this winning multi-ethnic coalition Government to the best of my ability. From the inception, the goals values and standards were very much appreciated, and for that, I want to cherish my experience.”
However, Harbhajan, a long-standing member of the AFC over the past decade, told the party that he no longer shares those sentiments and views.
“I am of the belief that the party was formed to serve the needs of our people and in my humble opinion those things which were once valued by the member of the party no longer exists,” Harbhajan said as he bid farewell to the party.
When contacted, AFC Chairman Raphel Trotman said he did not receive the letter but was informed by Harbhajan of his decision.
Trotman said he is aware that Harbhajan and many members on the AFC shared views on matters.
“He had clashes with some members of the party over issues that he did not agree with,” Trotman told this publication, adding that he has high regards for Harbhajan and wishes him well in his future endeavours.
“He has always proven to me that he is a people’s person and I will support him in that regard,” Trotman said while noting that his professionalism will not prevent Harbhajan from moving on.
Meanwhile, Harbhajan told this publication that after the party was a part of the winning coalition, he and the AFC started seeing things differently.
“It seems as if the party was not keeping its promises, so, we started seeing things differently,” he said.
According to Harbhajan, his mind was turned from the party at its conference in 2018, where he contested to be reelected to the party’s National Executive.
However, he did not tender his resignation.
“I continued to serve as an RDC Councillor working in the best interest of the people. And as PM Rep I had to assist and serve the people of the region with whatever resources available and with the help of the Regional Chairman,” Harbhajan pointed out.
Asked about the nine seats which the AFC will be taking up in the next Parliament, Harbhajan said the party is fortunate to be given so many seats.
He said that the leaders of the AFC became selfish and the Executives only “looks out for themselves.”
“Over the years I have been at loggerheads with the Executive. There is a power struggle at the top. The top bracket only looks out for themselves. The AFC will not get newcomers. I will like to see political parties with young new faces and ideas. I still have respect for a few members of the AFC like Trotman, Nigel Hughes and a few others,” Harbhajan added.
Since its defeat at the March 2 elections, the APNU/AFC Coalition has been trying to keep its wits together.
In fact, the PNCR, which is the leading party in the APNU faction of the Coalition, has been publicly embroiled in disunity and power struggles among its members.