Harmon defends Cabinet’s meeting at GDF Officers’ Mess


At a post-cabinet meeting at the Ministry of the Presidency today, State Minister Joseph Harmon defended Government’s decision to utilize the Guyana Defence Force’s Sports club at Camp Ayanganna for the holding of cabinet meetings.


Harmon said the venue provides the sort of protection that is needed when Cabinet meetings are hosted under the Freedom of Information act.


“There is an act called the Freedom of Information act signed and ascented to President Bharrat Jagdeo in 2011; the same gentleman that is talking about Cabinet being here and Cabinet being there. In that act, it provides for the security of cabinet, the security of documents that have to deal with Cabinet and it exempts any cabinet document from Public disclosure unless it is specifically cleared by the responsible Minister” the Minister said.


The relocation of the meetings is due to current rehabilitation works at the Ministry of the Presidency.


Harmon further disclosed that the works to be done at the ministry will take 3-4 months.


“You would recognize that since we came into office that we had a do a tremendous amount of work in this complex to bring it to this state where we are. This name for example, where you are sitting is not how it used to be. We have fixed it, rehabilitated to how it is…it is not just for Cabinet, it is for the Guyanese public at large that have to do business here in Guyana.”


The State Minister said Government has to ensure that at all times the image of the country is protected, supporting the need for renovations to the various quarters at the Ministry of the Presidency.


Previously the government said “after consideration of a number of options it was found that the vast majority of these venues did not meet several or some of the most important requirements or were unavailable for the times required.”


The statement clarified that there is no additional cost to the state for use of the Officers’ Mess.

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