Jagdeo calls out Gov’t on intimidation of MPs; Challenges administration to do its worst
Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo says he finds the timing of the issuance of letters to five PPP/C Parliamentarians by the Guyana Revenue Authority to be suspicious and could be interpreted as intimidation on the part of Government.
Jagdeo told media operatives on Thursday, December 15, 2016, that the MPs received the letters during the consideration of estimates in the committee of supply for property taxes they may or may not owe the tax collection body.
According to him every time the opposition mounts a criticism of the government or points out his party deems as government corruption, there is a pattern of behavior that follows. “Last night and this morning five Members of Parliament of the Peoples Progressive Party: Frank Anthony, Indra Chandarpal, Irfaan Ali, Joe Hamilton and Bishop Edghill, received letters from the GRA talking about their property tax between yesterday and today. Five of them and I suspect it’s the government’s vindictiveness again. Either it’s Jordan or the collective view of the government and you will see the acceleration of this.”
However, the Opposition Leader is firm that his party will not be intimidated nor will its members be muzzled. “They think that by threatening investigations, that threatening to lock up people that they will intimidate us. They will not.”
In fact, he says, if the government is to use the same standard for itself, then half of the cabinet would be in jail.
Jagdeo was also asked about the legitimacy of the letters from the tax agency to which he responded that some MPs have indicated to him that they do not owe one cent to the GRA but will be responding to the missives they received.
The Opposition Leader then took things one step further and urged government to do their worst if they are going to come after his MPs, daring the administration to “come after us (PPP), it’s no problem; you should have done that already, you’ve had nearly two years, you’ve had all your forensic audits, do the worst that you can do, charge whoever you have to charge but we will not be intimidated by this government.”