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Small parties needed at least 7,000 votes to get a parliamentary seat- APNU

FLASH BACK: Leader of the National Front Alliance and President David Granger, who is also Chairman of APNU and Leader of the PNCR.

The People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR)-controlled A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) on Wednesday said the small political parties needed to demonstrate that they could garner at least 7,000 votes to secure a seat in the National Assembly.

APNU is denying that there was discrimination or preferential treatment in selecting who should represent the coalition in Parliament.

“It is, therefore, false and regrettable, for anyone to state that small parties within the APNU are being used, abused and discarded.  All parties that comprise the APNU are valued members of the partnership.  We respect them and urge them to continue to work to achieve our goal of a more cohesive society,” APNU said.

Other benchmarks, APNU, says in determining who should go forward as parliamentarians, citizenship, competence,  community service, constituency representation, ethnic balance, gender balance, generational balance, geographical balance, occupational balance, and political party membership.

APNU recalls that when it launched its campaign on February 1, 2019, its Chairman,  David Granger had said that it would take about 7,000 votes to qualify for a single parliamentary seat. Mr. Granger had encouraged each minor party to aim for that target. On Wednesday, APNU provided no evidence on how it gauged the number of votes each party would have won.

FILE PIC: Leader of the Justice for All Party, Chandra Narine Sharma speaking with President David Granger.

APNU indicates that the PNCR, Working People’s Alliance and the Guyana Action Party will be sending candidates to Parliament. The WPA’s representative is its Chairman, Tabitha Sarabo-Halley and GAP’s is its General Secretary, Vincent Henry.

No mention was made of the National Front Alliance (NFA), led by former minister Keith Scott,  or the Justice For All Party (JFAP). The JFAP, whose leaders are Chandra Narine and Savitri Sharma,  had publicly called on the coalition to accept the results from the recount to declare the results of the March 2, 2020 general and regional elections.

The Alliance For Change (AFC) has already identified its 9 candidates to become parliamentarians, in keeping with its agreement with the PNCR that it would be allotted 30 percent of the coalition seats.

APNU says it is false and regrettable, for anyone to state that small parties within the APNU are being used, abused and discarded.