Harmon “no longer enjoys” trust, confidence of PNC Executives – Region 5 members
…motion filed for Harmon’s recall from Parliament
…seeks to replace Harmon with Norton
A motion to recall former Opposition Leader Joseph Harmon has been filed and seconded but not voted on although it was circulated at the level of the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) Central Executive Committee (CEC) in a move to replace Harmon with new party leader Aubrey Norton.
The motion, moved by the party’s Regional Treasurer for Region Five (Mahaica-Berbice), Carol Nurse Carmichael and seconded by Angela Mc Donald, Chairperson for the Paradise PNCR group, states that Harmon “no longer enjoys the trust and confidence of the Executive Members, General Membership and Supporters of the PNCR Region 5.”
The motion, seen by this publication, also states that Harmon’s abrupt resignation as Opposition Leader for the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) leaves the constitutional office vacant and in urgent need of being filled.
The motion also points out that Norton, who is among the APNU/AFC’s 2020 General and Regional Elections List of Candidates, is qualified to sit in the National Assembly as a Member of Parliament (MP) and Opposition Leader.
“Be It Resolved: The Representative of the APNU+AFC 2020 General and Regional Elections list of candidates Mr David Granger should immediately recall Mr Joseph Harmon, from Parliament.”
“Be It Further Resolved: That Representative of the APNU+AFC list of candidates Mr David Granger should immediately replace (filling the vacant seat) him with Mr Aubrey Norton after extracting his name from the Coalition’s 2020 General and Regional Elections List of candidates,” the motion further states.
A reliable source meanwhile informed this publication that while the CEC met on Sunday, this motion was not moved and discussed in its entirety but merely circulated. According to the source, however, the CEC did discuss the best way forward when it comes to filling the now vacant position of Opposition Leader. These discussions are expected to continue this week.
It was only last week that, amid mounting pressure from within the party, Harmon had resigned as Opposition Leader thus making way for Norton to take up the role. Subsequently, Harmon had not been physically present at the reading of the 2022 budget.
Norton, who secured a landslide victory at the party’s internal Congress in December 2021, had disclosed earlier this month that the PNCR Central Executive Committee (CEC) has decided that he should also hold the post as Leader of the Opposition.
But Harmon, who lost his bid for the PNCR leadership position to Norton, had been adamant that he should remain in the position, which was given to him by former PNCR Leader, David Granger. Harmon was also not re-elected to the party’s Central Executive Committee – the highest decision-making body of the party.
Harmon’s resignation was preceded by a series of meetings over the past two weeks.
In a brief statement after his announced resignation, the PNC expressed gratitude to Harmon and thanked him for his service. The party also said it will address the issue of filling the position of Leader of the Opposition with its coalition partners in the shortest possible time.
Moreover, at Wednesday’s sitting of the National Assembly, during which the Government-presented Budget 2022, House Speaker Manzoor Nadir announced that he will soon be meeting with the APNU/AFC on the election of a new Opposition Leader.
Deputy Speaker Lenox Shuman, who is the representative of the joinder list which comprises of A New and United Guyana (ANUG), the Liberty and Justice Party (LJP) and The New Movement (TNM), has indicated that he would not be participating in that process to elect the new Leader of the Opposition.
Harmon’s resignation as Opposition Leader came one day after he also stepped down as General Secretary of the APNU, while Granger resigned as the party’s Chairman. APNU’s Chairmanship has since been taken up by Norton. (G3)