By Kurt Campbell
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Leader of the Alliance for Change (AFC), Khemraj Ramjattan is maintaining that the AFC sponsored No – Confidence Motion remains top priority for his Parliamentarians even as he has indicated his willingness and that of his Party to support other Bills and Motions.
Ramjattan, in a telephone interview with iNews this morning (November 04), said everything must be done to rid Guyana of this “wholly atrocious monstrosity” for a government.
The AFC’s Motion which is likely to get the support of the main opposition – A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) – will trigger National Elections once successful.
“The priority will be the No Confidence Motion as it now stands for the Alliance for Change… however we will flex in that position if there is a need to,” he added.
He said the AFC has a planned meeting with the APNU on Wednesday, November 05, where it will make its final decision on what will be supported on the Parliamentary agenda.
He made reference to the APNU’s Motion which was recently filed with the Clerk of the National Assembly; seeking to amend the Standing Orders to bring greater clarity to both the role of the Speaker and the Majority in the House and to set a specific time frame for which the National Assembly should reconvene after a recess.
“We believe that the Motion, though important, may not be as important as the Anti-Money Laundering Bill and the Telecoms Bills,” Ramjattan said; adding that “so while we may flex to support this two, we are not going to support the whole gamut of matters there now so that he No Confidence Motion will be blocked.”
He said it is possible to get the two Bills passed on the same day as the debate on the Motion. “That’s our position.”
The AFC Leader acknowledged however that the APNU’s position may differ and they may seek to go ahead with the Motion to amend the Standing Orders.
All this is being done even as there appears to be a gridlock over the setting of a date for the first sitting of the House following the end of the recess on October 10.
When contacted by iNews, APNU Parliamentarian, Joseph Harmon said the Clerk has responded to say that he is receipt of the Motion but he could not say when it will be placed on the Order Paper.
He explained that it will be subject to requirements for notice.
The President in a statement at the weekend had said that his government which is said to be the only authority that can call a sitting under the current circumstances will announce a date within coming days.
On Wednesday last, Clerk of the National Assembly, Sherlock Isaacs turned down House Speaker Raphael Trotman’s request for him to convene a sitting of the House on November 06.
The Clerk conveyed his refusal in a letter to the Speaker and told iNews that his refusal was based his earlier argument that only the government can reconvene the House under the current circumstances.
The Speaker has since issued a public statement registering his disagreement with the Clerk’s interpretation.