All fair and just-minded Guyanese knew that the Speaker would uphold the vote for the no-confidence motion against the coalition Government since it was legally and constitutionally valid. The Speaker, Dr Barton Scotland has made it clear that there is no ‘strong compelling grounds’ for him to reverse his decision. In other words, he did not accept Attorney General Basil Williams’ argument that 34 votes constituted a majority to uphold a vote of no-confidence in the National Assembly. It is an accepted fact that the coalition was ruling with a one vote majority but Williams wanted the Speaker to disregard it! The other submissions of dual citizenship and allegations of bribery were not relevant to his decision, a majority of the members voted in favor of the no-confidence motion and that is relevant.
The only way forward as far as Guyanese are concerned is for the Government to stop living in denial and give legal effect the Constitutional provisions clearly outlined in Article 106 subsections (6) and (7). The coalition Government must resign and hold elections within 90 days and this must be so notwithstanding the court action now being proposed by Basil Williams in a deliberate effort to stall the calling of elections. The Constitutional provisions are clear and there is no legal authority to prolong the stipulated 90 days unless such extension is agreed upon by a two-third majority of the House. I am sure that Hughes and Williams will not be able to suggest another version of what constitutes a two-third majority!
The date December 21, 2018, will leave its indelible mark in the annals of this country as the date when the single most powerful statement was ever made in the National Assembly in the face of the failure of a Government to live up to its campaign promises but instead became inundated in mismanagement and corruption. This profound message will forever be etched in the psyche of our politicians that indeed the people can continue to speak through its elected representatives and that is exactly what happened in former MP Charrandas’ case. Why would a political party expel a member because he listens to the voice of his constituency? Then recall and replace him in the National Assembly?
Moreover, Charrandas did not ‘defect’ to the PPP, all he did was vote according to the dictates of his conscience and if the e-mail of the leader of the AFC is placed into context, it will be seen that the statements made by Charrandas intricately supports the call made to members by the AFC Leader Mr Raphael Trotman. He had wanted to use the 2019 Budget as leverage to get the APNU to accede to the demands of the AFC but since he ‘chickened’ out, it was up to Charrandas to do the honor, which he did! It must be recalled that the AFC’s many attempts to get APNU to revise the Cummingsburg Accord have failed and Granger had stipulated that the Accord will not be renewed until 2020 Elections. In the meantime, the APNU continued to replace the AFC members – Dr Ramayya was replaced with Kim Stephens and Charrandas was replaced with Barbara Pilgrim – both APNU members! This again supports Trotman’s email and Charrandas’s statements.
Would anyone have thought just over a month after the Local Government Elections on November 12 that the coalition Government would have fallen? Even when the no-confidence motion was filed by Dr Jagdeo a few days after no one thought that it would have been successful, but the Leader of the Opposition was very optimistic, given the current state of the economy and the overwhelming win at the LGE. It is now an incontrovertible conclusion that the Leader of the Opposition, Dr Bharat Jagdeo will be remembered as the greatest political tactician and strategist this country has ever seen and that is now accepted even by his political opponents.
The coalition tried their best to keep off the presidency by running as far as the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) but that did not dampen the indomitable spirit of this great statesman, in fact he became stronger. What a legacy to leave behind! The fall of the coalition is enough proof!