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No power sharing talks if witch hunt continues– Rohee

Donald Ramotar and David Granger

by Zena Henry

The People’s Progressive Party (PPP) says it is not prepared to sit and talk with the government on any issue of unity and shared governance if they continue to witch-hunt their supporters in what they believe is “political headhunting and forensic sleuthing.” The party believes that the “unity government” is attacking its members and supporters to prove allegations of corruption and other wrongdoings by the former PPP government as was touted on their election campaign trail.

In this light, PPP General Secretary Clement Rohee at the party’s weekly press briefing Monday June 15 said that, “the party would not be duped into entering into such an engagement at a time when its members and supporters are under attack by the political hierarchy of the coalition and it’s under links.”

According to Rohee, the government’s action of firing state workers believe to be connected or sympathetic to the PPP, “openly contradicts the call by the Coalition for the PPP to enter into talks with the APNU+AFC on the issue of national unity and shared governance.”

Rohee told the media that the new A Partnership for National Unity+ Alliance for Change (APNU+AFC) Coalition has embarked on a “big masquerade” that suggests massive investigations to put right, wrong doing by the PPP while they were in government.

Minister of State Joseph Harmon and other government ministers have already indicated very grey areas in their particular ministries where wrongdoing may have taken place. It was widely publicized that the new government is scrutinizing specifically the State’s finances to ascertain what they believe was rampant corruption involving the former government.

Rohee said however that, “all these highly publicized actions are being taken without any just cause; any investigations, neither any involvement of the Auditor General or the relevant constitutional body nor the production of incontrovertible evidence.” He said these actions in essence are “arbitrary, vindictive, malicious and politically motivated.”

Rohee suggested that the government has failed miserably to prove their election campaign claims of corruption and has now opted for a highly publicized campaign about investigating wrongdoings and corrupt practices.

However, when the GS was taken to task on the removal of supporters of the then People’s National Congress (PNC) when the PPP came into power in 1992, Rohee denied that the party had done the same thing.

He said witch hunting is the “recklessly and whimsically, political motive, just dismiss people without any reason or without an explanation whatsoever simply because you feel that they can’t be trusted because they spoke on a political platform and therefore their services must be terminated. Rohee said, “That did not occur in the 1992/ 1993 period;” when the party would have taken power.

He was asked however whether as a politician he would be comfortable working people who openly sought support for the opposing party, and for instance, Permanent Secretaries who would have been on the party’s list of candidates.

The GS suggested that he saw no reason why those persons should not have been remained by the government. He said unless there is incontrovertible evidence that the persons were unlawful in carrying out their tasks, should action be taken against them.