In an almost 30 minutes post on his personal Facebook page, former Alliance for Change (AFC) Member of Parliament (MP) Charrandas Persaud once again touched on the no-confidence motion in which his deciding vote in support of the Opposition caused the motion to be carried.
Among other things, Charrandas detailed his reasons for voting in favour of the motion brought in the name of Opposition Leader for the People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) Dr Bharrat Jagdeo.
One of his major focal points was what he dubbed as the failure of the incumbent APNU/AFC government to create jobs for young people in Guyana.
“Young people, what is in this country for you? What is in Guyana for you? What has the APNU/AFC given you? I see nothing and I was sitting in Parliament” Persaud chastised.
The now embattled MP noted that the Government failed to create opportunities for the young people, more so failing to prepare them for the Oil and Gas Sector that is expected to come on stream in 2020.
Persaud questioned why was no plan put in place at the University of Guyana, for the over three and half years that this Government was in power, “to educate you the youngsters in Oil and Gas so that when you come out…you can have more than just the cleanup man’s job, why? Where is their vision, what are they doing with you?”
Further Persaud encouraged youths to speak up and stand up against the wrong that the Government is doing.
The former MP noted that his hands were tied and as such he was unable to do the job that he aimed to do when he accepted a position in Parliament.
“You young people, learn not to be afraid, tell your parents that you have to stand up for the wrong that Government did, whichever Government is handling you, you need to stop it, you need to get them to work towards stopping it. I apologise because I couldn’t do anything, I couldn’t help the people but once the opportunity presented itself, I decided to support the vote of no-confidence and have them removed…What I did was out of concern for the people of Guyana, I don’t think that the Government has anything to offer me, the position of an MP takes me away from my job, it’s more of a detriment to me than anything else…I took the position thinking that I could’ve done something for the people, not knowing that my hands were tied, my mouth was gagged and I wouldn’t be able to do anything because they wouldn’t let you, they didn’t consult with you, so I apologise to all the people that had to put up with me being in Parliament doing nothing for 3 ½ years” Persaud explained.
The coalition Government was left stunned on December 21, 2018 when Persaud voted yes in favor of the motion.
During the tabulation, all 32 of the Opposition MPs voted in favour of the motion being carried, with the AFC MP giving them the one vote needed to have the motion passed.
When Persaud delivered his first “yes”, all hell broke loose. He received the first punch on his left arm by an APNU MP who insisted that Persaud “can’t vote against the Government.”
This was followed by a series of expletives by the same MP and surprisingly Persaud also received another punch from another APNU MP.
Outside the chambers, Persaud defended his vote against the Government. According to the MP, he voted that way because of the AFC’s subordinate role to the majority A Partnership for National Unity (APNU).
Persaud cited examples, like Public Health Minister Volda Lawrence’s recent controversial statement about hiring party faithfuls, and pointed out that the AFC leadership did not condemn, but rather condone, the statement.
“I am an AFC member, and I’m extremely disappointed in the AFC team. My reason for voting in favour of the motion is that I have no confidence in what the AFC team will do,” Persaud said, when questioned by the media.
“We are sitting in Parliament as yes men to APNU, and we are AFC. We have not blended with the APNU, the other parties have; we’re not. Why are we doing everything they want (us) to do? We are not opposing, we are not saying no to anything. That is where the problem is. I can’t stand that. This is a conscience vote,” he had explained.