We have seen in the media that on several occasions the Alliance for Change (AFC) is doing intense maneuvering to get APNU to concede to negotiations to review the Cummingsburg Accord(CA) but the APNU is amusingly uninterested.
It was reported that in February, 2017 ‘the Alliance For Change has proudly announced the appointment of a special Cummingsburg Accord Review Committee (CARC)… to deal with representation at the local government level and the absence of a dispute resolution mechanism although that has been provided for in the Cummingsburg Accord’ among other ‘deficiencies’.
However, President Granger who is also the leader of APNU made it clear that there is no obligation to review the CA. He stated that, “The Cummingsburg Accord has unfortunately, or fortunately depending on how you look at it, a requirement to review the Accord after three years and that three years will expire after midnight on February 13, 2018,” the President said.
Is it that the AFC made a strategic blunder by exposing their ignorance of the provisions of the CA? I will not say that they do not know the contents of the CA, but what the leaders of the AFC have been doing is to clutch at imaginary straws in an effort to stem the exodus of its members and supporters. They had to show that they have some breath remaining regardless how feeble that may be.
On February 12th 2018, the AFC came to its senses and reported that there will be no discussion on the CA and the APNU before Wednesday 14th February, ‘as mandated by members last year’. Why were the members not told before that the CA did not provide for a review before the third anniversary? It was just a game for public benefit!
This game was then extended to February, 17th when the AFC’s Leader Raphael Trotman said that, ‘there will be no meeting before the 14th …We have an NEC meeting on the 17th [February 2018] and from there we decide on the way forward’. Now we have seen that three years have elapsed and the review is still to be done.
However, on February 14th, 2018 President Granger as Leader of the APNU stated that, ‘The AFC has several options, it can allow the accord to proceed as it is proceeding at present, it can allow it to expire on 2020 or it can make a request for a meeting…’ Will the AFC allow the CA to run until 2020? I do believe it will since they have gotten more than they deserve from the Accord and from all indications APNU’s nonchalance is a clear indication that the AFC should not press its luck further in the matter. The AFC no longer serves any useful and strategic purpose to the APNU and the latter is just waiting for an excuse to make them expendable.
We have also seen that even though the AFC leader Mr Trotman has made it clear that the CA does not contain anything about LGE, the AFC continues to waver on this issue, that is, whether to go alone or with the Coalition. The AFC doing a solo will only expose its weakness and the APNU knows that.
We have thus seen that either way, the APNU is not keen. The APNU is cognizant that the AFC has nothing to offer at the LGE, it support base is almost decimated. Those in the AFC who are enjoying the ‘good life’ may be in oblivion, but the stark reality would suggest the ‘good life’ has been an orchestrated mirage to fool the masses. That mirage has now disappeared and the ‘good life’ prior to May 2015 has been eroded with great alacrity. The 2.1 % economic growth in 2017 and the precipitous decline in 2018 are strong evidences to suggest that the AFC made a monumental and unforgivable blunder to coalesce with the APNU!
In conclusion, the AFC is again clutching at imaginary straws when it gives a two-week ultimatum to discuss LGE. The CA does not provide for that and the APNU is not interested whether they go solo or as a Coalition. The AFC has been for a long time been ‘singing and dancing’ to its own tune! The prophetic words of the then Leader Mr Khemraj Ramjattan has come to pass. The AFC is now ‘dead meat’ and no Mosaic rituals can bring it back to life!
RDC Councillor-Region 6