President Granger’s handlers have gotten their collective undergarments in a knot, and are squealing about the Opposition Leader’s announcement that, come March 21, Granger ceases to be President; and as such he’ll be addressing the fella living in the “Green House” as plain, old “Mr. Granger”.
“NO!!” they shriek, “the President will continue to be President until another one is sworn in!!”
Now, once again, the PNC Government spokespersons are following the lead taken by their leader, to insist that their “perception” of what the Constitution says is what it ACTUALLY says!! But it doesn’t take much to separate “sense from nonsense”…all we gotta do is go to the Constitution and read what it says. Article 106 (6) declares quite unambiguously, “The Cabinet including the President shall resign if the Government is defeated by the vote of a majority of all the elected members of the National Assembly on a vote of confidence.”
Now, isn’t this “defeat” by an NCM exactly what happened? Didn’t the PNC Government already return to the National Assembly and had the Speaker reiterate that “boat done gone a watah”?? Didn’t the court already add its voice to the obvious import of Art 106 (6) – that the President and his Cabinet were “gone with the wind”??
Well, the PNC diehards might say they’ve appealed the judgement. Well…duh!! The appeal wasn’t about what the President and Cabinet had to do…it had to do with whether the NCM was actually carried! And only IF the Appellate Court rules otherwise can anything change. So, in the meantime, the workings of the Constitution – which is the SUPREME law of the land – holds: there’s NO President and Cabinet once the NCM was passed!! Sayonara!! At least the Cabinet acknowledged this reality, since they’ve been referring to their meetings as a “plenary”!!
Jagdeo was being kind on the President’s status until the Day of Constitutional Supremacy, since technically he was a “resigned president”.
But the President’s handlers went on to jump on a second limb – Art 106 (7), which says, “Notwithstanding its defeat, the GOVERNMENT shall remain in office and shall hold an election within three months, or such longer period as the National Assembly shall by resolution supported by not less than two-thirds of the votes of all elected members of the National Assembly determine, and shall resign after the President takes the oath of office following the election.”
But they pretend to be blind to the fact that the Constitution is not an ass! It’s making a DISTINCTION between the “President and Cabinet” and “the Government”! And of course the GOVERNMENT continues…but NOT the President and Cabinet.
That’s why we have “government departments” and “heads”!!
Your Eyewitness is predicting that March 21, 2019 – which is the day the Opposition has presented the Government with the opportunity to acknowledge supremacy of the Constitution – will unfortunately go down in history as a “day of infamy” for our young republic. A “day of infamy” because ignoring the crystal-clear dictates of the Constitution will cause incalculable harm to its sanctity. And this, we know, is the only line dividing us from reverting to the law of the jungle.
We are a young nation, but if we need to know how we can survive to become an old nation, we can do worse than look over to the US, the most powerful nation on earth, and reflect on the fact that their respect for their constitution is the most significant reason for their success. Sure a constitution might not be perfect – nothing that man creates can be. We aren’t omniscient, but there are built-in amendment procedures to make changes.
But we don’t just dump all over it. One day “we may look to the rock for rescue, but there’ll be no rock!”