The Guyana Bar Association, the premier legal institution comprising of a collective of legal luminaries, said that to suggest that the recently passed no-confidence motion, which was publicly accepted by the incumbent, was not validly passed is erroneous.
The Bar Council in a statement has urged that “the results and consequences of the motion be accepted and that urgent preparations for elections by the Elections Commission be started.”
According to the Association, the mere fact that the passed motion was accepted by the Government and the President it means that national and regional elections are therefore constitutionally due by the operation of Article 106(6) of the Constitution no later than Thursday, 19 March 2019 on the expiration of 90 days from 21 December 2018, when the motion was passed.
In addressing the arguments advanced against the passage of the motion, including from Nigel Hughes, a prominent Attorney-at-Law who contends that a positive vote of 34 members of the National Assembly was required for the passage of the motion, the Council rejected it as erroneous.
“The giving of effect to any contentions that there is some possibility other than elections being held within 90 days of the passage of the motion could lead to instability and our democracy must be protected by the unambiguous adherence to the rule of law and to the provisions of Article 106(6) of the Constitution” said the Bar Council.
Following the historic no-confidence vote, a meeting is being arranged between Opposition Leader Dr Bharrat Jagdeo and President David Granger when the latter returns from Cuba early in January.
Jagdeo noted that he has received an official document from the Clerk of the National Assembly, Sherlock Isaacs certifying the passage of the no-confidence motion.
With their respective supporters still absorbing the results, Jagdeo reiterated the need for a meeting between him and President Granger. He noted that while the Constitution was clear on the time line for elections, there was still need for them to discuss the dynamics pre-and-post elections.
“We still need to talk about this period, about our conduct in this period, a conduct that doesn’t polarise our country any further. And I said my party is prepared to have that discussion about the future, what happens in the post-election period that would result in a new government. Whether the new government is controlled by APNU/AFC or PPP, there shall be a new government.”
President Granger, on Saturday last said the Government of Guyana, following the passing of the no-confidence motion in the National Assembly, will abide by the stipulations which have been imposed on it.
“We will do everything necessary to facilitate the smooth functioning of General and Regional Elections bearing in mind the need for normal governmental functions to continue uninterrupted,” President Granger had said.