Harmon says will remain Opposition Leader

Last Updated on Sunday, 19 December 2021, 15:09 by Denis Chabrol

Joseph Harmon.

Mr. Joseph Harmon on Sunday said he would remain Guyana’s Opposition Leader, although he was defeated by Aubrey Norton for the post of leader of the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) which controls the opposition coalition.

He noted that he would remain as an “ordinary member” of the PNCR but would still be Leader of the Opposition, a national constitutional office.

Former PNCR Leader  David Granger, who is Chairman of  the PNCR-led A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) is legally the Representative of the list of candidates for the coalition of APNU+Alliance For Change and so he enjoys the power of recall and replacement of parliamentarians.

In the weeks running up to Saturday’s election, Mr. Harmon had pointed to the trend in which the PNCR Leader is the Opposition Leader and had said that that had been his goal.

For his part, Mr. Norton had not committed himself on the topic when he had been quizzed about whether he would seek the replacement of Mr. Harmon as Opposition Leader. Instead Mr. Norton had indicated that that would be a matter for the party to decide.

Prior to the heated campaign for the PNCR’s internal elections, Mr. Norton had been employed at the Office of the President’s Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration after Mr. Granger had removed him as a presidential advisor.

Mr. Harmon had been Minister of State and latterly Director-General of the Ministry of the Presidency.

After APNU+AFC had lost the March 2o20 general and regional elections, Mr. Harmon had hired Mr. Norton as Executive Director of the Office of the Leader of the Opposition.