Speaker: PPP Parliament protest ‘inexcusable and irredeemable’
The protest by the Opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) in Parliament two weeks ago, in which they displayed placards during the speech by President David Granger was inexcusable and irredeemable, Dr Barton Scotland, Speaker of the House said in a statement Friday afternoon.
The Speaker said that the protest was not in keeping with the rules of the National Assembly.
“The display shown was intemperate and misguided,” he stated.
“Let it be recorded that this House strongly deprecates the conduct of some members of the House,” the Speaker declared.
According to Dr Scotland, he is the only one who can allow display of materials in the House; he said he was not approached for permission nor did he give permission. He said that while the rules of the House protect all Parliamentarians, it also guides their conduct.
The Speaker said it was “supremely ironic” that the messages on the placards, some of them “with poor spelling and grammar”, were in support of democracy and free speech.
Further, he lamented that the protest was “unworthy” of the House. He noted the Parliamentary rules which dictate silence when another Member is addressing the House.
Further, the Speaker said that if the protest was intended to disrupt the sitting of the House, then that was not successful, since the purpose for which the 71st Sitting was called, namely the speech by the President, was fulfilled.
He said that the presence of the President is an occasion for which respect should be demonstrated.