By Jomo Paul
[www.inewsguyana.com] – On the heels of widespread criticism over the decision by two former Presidents to take the APNU+AFC administration to court over amendments to the Former Presidents Benefits and Facilities Bill, one President is defending the court action.
Former President Donald Ramotar and his predecessor Bharrat Jagdeo had filed a court action claiming that “A Declaration that the Former Presidents (Benefits and other Facilities) Act No. 3 of 2015 does not retrospectively affect benefits which accrued to them under the Former President (Benefits and other Facilities) Act of 2009.”
Effectively this court action is seeking uncap the benefits of the two Former Presidents which was capped with the amendments to the Bill. Ramotar during a recent interview with iNews said that the Government acted unconstitutionally when it moved to have the Bill amended via the National Assembly shortly after assuming office.
The ex-President was adamant that the lawsuit is not for additional benefits.
“We are suing the State for what we are constitutionally entitled to – things that Desmond Hoyte and previous presidents had enjoyed before. It’s not that we are suing for any additional benefits. We just feel that the Government should respect our constitution and what our benefits are,” said Ramotar.
The Former Presidents (Benefits and Other Facilities) Bill 2015 was on Thursday, July 09 passed by the APNU+AFC Parliamentarians in the absence of the People’s Progressive Party Opposition.
The Bill slashes several benefits for Guyana’s former Presidents – Samuel Hinds, Jagdeo and Ramotar – Guyana’s only living former Heads of State.
The Bill limits expenses incurred for utilities such as telephone, water and electricity to $25,000 each month. It also states that “services of personal and household staff, including a gardener, provided that the total number of such staff shall not exceed three persons, including any member of the staff who may be on earned vacation or sick leave.”
Further, the Former Presidents are subject to a financial limit of $200,000 per annum to cover medical expenses; however the reimbursement is only given if the said medical treatment is not available at local public health institutions.
This dunce and the side truly believe in being paid top dollar for failure
Ask the former El Presidente if he is entitled to any retirement benefit from organization he served so …. ???, the PPP.
Everyone just voted the PPP out of office complaining about corruption, if you can’t see why the APNU/AFC approved the increases for government workers including the PPP in parliament you are being blind or naive. As for more benefits for ex-presidents, there should be a cap, however the ex-president regardless if they or liked or not should live extra- above living standards if that make sense, after all they will still represent Guyana in some capacity as far as hosting dignities and foreign leaders over time, so its my personal opinion they should receive more but capped benefits and be reviewed over time for increases or decreases per inflation rates.
Okay, Inews! I will be nice to Donald, so you don’t have to pull this one, too. The Donald never held a senior managerial, let alone, corporate executive job all his life. Yes, he sat on GuySuCo Board, but he failed to help stop it from bleeding financially, and while doubling as leader of the PPP, he allowed GAWU to call industrial strikes against PPP-run GuySuCo.
He led the PPP, but he failed to win a parliamentary majority when he ran for President in 2011. The guy is just a plain loser. He has nothing to show on his resume as an achiever. He is a member of the PPP political entitlement plan.
So when he talks about being constitutionally entitled, what he really means is that he is politically entitled, as per the manner in which he was chosen by The Boy for the presidency.
In fact, when asked by media operatives what sort of legacy he wants to see define his legacy, the dude said there will be no legacy because he will be continuing the work started by Jagdeo. Decisions, continued, are made by the party and executed by the government. Explains why he is out and Jagdeo is back?
I challenge Inews to list Ramotar’s achievements before and during his failed presidency!
Sometimes, this chap and Jagdeo would do the PPP a whole lot of good by keeping their mouths shut. Jagdeo made provisions for himself and Ramoutar to be a heavy burden on the backs of the people of Guyana until they die. Now this bully opens his mouth and shows more contempt for the taxpayers of this country when he talks of “entitlement”.
Jagdeo and Ramoutar are no different from the bullies and bloodsuckers (who demanded 50% increase) that the APNU/AFC are.