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President dissolves Parliament

President Donald Ramotar on Tuesday finally announced the dissolution of Parliament, paving the way for general and regional elections on May 11, 2015.

Ramotar’s failure to dissolve Parliament and announce the date at the same time had drawn criticism from Former Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) Judge, Professor Duke Pollard and the Guyana Bar Association (GBA).

But Attorney General, Anil Nandlall has said that the President has a right to dissolve Parliament within a certain time frame to take into account Nomination Day which has to be at least 32 days before polling day.

Following is an address to the nation.

As you are aware, last November I prorogued the Tenth Parliament of Guyana.

As I explained then, that action was taken to allow the parties in Parliament additional opportunities to talk and hopefully resolve the pressing National issues that were confronting us.

In addition, I wanted to give GECOM time to have another round of Continuous Registration to enfranchise those persons, who, through no fault of their own, did not have the source document to be registered.

Unfortunately the opposition refused to dialogue and I was left with no option but to call elections for May 11, 2015.

I did not dissolve the Parliament at the same time because had I done so, the claims and objections period which also allows for transfers would have been truncated.

Were the latter to have occurred, thousands of Guyanese voters who changed their place of residence would not have been able to obtain their transfers and this could have led to them being disenfranchised.

The Claims and Objection period ended last Sunday, February 22, 2015, clearing the way for me to dissolve the Parliament.

I therefore wish to announce that earlier today I issued the Proclamations that identify 28th February, 2015 as the date of the Dissolution of the 10th Parliament of Guyana and the Ten Regional Democratic Councils.

As I have previously announced, General and Regional Elections will be held on May 11, 2015.

I thank you and Good night!