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President, Opposition Leader to meet soon on constitutional appointments

Last Updated on Wednesday, 20 April 2022, 20:56 by Denis Chabrol

President Irfaan Ali. Aubrey Norton.

President Irfaan Ali on Wednesday night said he would be inviting Opposition Leader Aubrey Norton to constitutionally required consultations on the appointment of a number of service commissions and a substantive Police Commissioner.

Speak9ing with reporters at Pegasus Hotel on the sidelines 0f the launch of the 2022 Building Expo, he said the letter of invitation would be dispatched to Mr. Norton on Thursday. “My intention is to meet with the Leader of the Opposition within two weeks…Well, you know there are a number of constitutional matters that have to be addressed so those are the matters that will primarily be on the table,” he said.

Guyana’s Constitution requires that the President and the Opposition Leader hold consultations for the appointment of the Police, Public Service, Teaching and Judicial Service Commissions that largely appoint and discipline persons under their purview. The Constitution also prescribes the need for consultations between the President and the Opposition Leader for the appointment of a Chancellor, Chief Justice and the Police Commissioner.

Despite the position by Mr. Norton’s coalition of A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) that it does not recognise the legitimacy of the government due to claims of widespread electoral fraud by the People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPPC), Mr. Norton last week had said that he would participate in consultations that are prescribed by the Constitution.

After several months of insisting that APNU+AFC must first recognise the PPPC as having been legitimately elected in free and fair elections before there are any talks, President Ali eventually had said constitutionally mandated consultations would be held.