AFC was against appointment of Dr Scotland as Speaker 


The Alliance For Change (AFC) arm of the coalition government did not approve of the appointment of Dr Barton Scotland as Speaker of the National Assembly, according to information emanating from leaked internal documents of the Party.

Dr Scotland, a former Guyanese diplomat, was nominated by government Chief Whip, Amna Ally and was seconded by AFC Executive Member, Cathy Hughes.

But the email exchanges show that David Patterson, the Minister of Public Infrastructure, reminded his colleagues that the AFC did not agree with the person appointed as the Speaker.

“Please recall that we opposed the appointment now Speaker – on the sole basis of his age, we recommended the more youthful Stephen Fraser and Abola Wong, we provided strong passionate arguments why youth should prevail,” Patterson reportedly stated in the email.

He was at the time expressing disapproval with the appointment of 84-year-old Justice James Patterson as the GECOM Chairman. Patterson allegedly stated that the appointment of the GECOM Chairman, just like the case with the Speaker, is “anti-AFC to the core”.

The former AFC General Secretary expressed that the Party is “no longer the party that I love and will go down fighting to keep alive.”

In the Cummingsburg Accord, A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) and the AFC agreed that the Speaker of the House would be selected from civil society.

Meanwhile, Dr Scotland is a legal expert on the Law of the sea and has held several diplomatic posts in the past. He led the Department of International Economic Co-operation under the Desmond Hoyte administration.

Scotland also served as a Commissioner on the Caricom Competition Commission which was launched in 2008 and later became its Chairman. Scotland worked in private practice in the areas of Natural Resources and Investment Law, Negotiations and International Law. He holds a Master of Law degree and a PhD in International Law.

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