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Guyana’s opposition will move no-confidence motion if govt reconvenes House for Budget

The Chamber of the National Assembly, Parliament Building

–elections can be pushed backed further

The Alliance For Change (AFC) intends to push through a no-confidence motion against government during any National Assembly sitting called for the presentation of the 2015 budget before the April 31st deadline and A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) is committed to lend its support.

Such a move would guarantee government another three months on office but the AFC believes that this will provide a date by which elections will be required, as opposed to the current situation, which everything is at the caprices of the president.

Though Parliament is currently prorogued there is speculation that President Donald Ramotar may lift the prorogation for the purpose of presenting the 2015 budget before the end of the first quarter of the year, as required by the constitution.

During his post-Cabinet press brief yesterday though, Cabinet Secretary Roger Luncheon noted that the President has registered his intention to dissolve Parliament and call general elections early this year. Luncheon says he does not see how it would be possible to have the 2015 budget presented by the deadline if Parliament is dissolved before that date.

He nevertheless said that extraordinary attempts can very well see the budget being brought before the deadline and said that all options are being considered.

Though the AFC and APNU are not optimistic that the prorogation will be lifted specially to allow the budget to be presented both would use the opportunity to revive the motion of no-confidence against government. Leader of the Opposition and APNU leader David Granger yesterday said “there is every indication on the part of the executive that the 10thParliament is all but expired.” He further stated the 2015 budget would, at any rate, not have the support of the APNU since its financial point man, Carl Greenidge, has not been invited to any discussions on the 2015 budget. That parliamentary coalition will determine its official position on the 2015 budget during a Shadow Cabinet meeting next week.

AFC General Secretary David Patterson expressed similar sentiments and added that“it would be a travesty for Parliament to be reconvened just to bring the budget.”

But, if government were to attempt to lift the prorogation just to present the budget Patterson says the AFC will capitalize with its no-confidence motion. He noted the requirement for six days’ notice before any sitting and said that the necessary preparations would be taken in that time, and that on the day of the sitting the AFC would move the necessary motions to set aside all other business to debate and vote on the no-confidence motion.

Meanwhile, Granger says the APNU is committed to supporting the no-confidence motion whenever it is brought.