“We have to hold the Speaker personally responsible” – Jagdeo
Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo declared that the House Speaker, Dr Barton Scotland must be held responsible for the commotion taking place in the National Assembly even as he called on him to apologise to the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) parliamentarians.
Jagdeo, who was not present during the consideration of the estimates, arrived in the parliamentary chambers after getting wind of the situation.
“This is not going to do down easily in this country,” Jagdeo told media operatives. He strongly believes the ruckus was carefully designed to distract attention from the controversy regarding the signing bonus the government received by the government from ExxonMobil.
As Jagdeo was being interviewed, the lights, air-conditioning and the Wifi in the Chambers were turned off. The Opposition Leader also called for President David Granger to hold a Commission of Inquiry into this unprecedented event.
The hullaballoo began when the Speaker was forced to call in the police after Opposition Member Bishop Juan Edghill defied orders to remove from the chambers.
Former Attorney General Anil Nandlall believes the course of action taken by the Speaker was excessive given that Edghill was not guilty of “gross disorderly conduct” neither was he being violent.
Nandlall contended that Edghill was simply expressing a concern with the limited time allowed to scrunitse the estimates. The Speaker has since refused to be interviewed by the media and the House remains suspended until Edghill leaves voluntarily or is removed by the police.
Earlier, Opposition Parliamentarian Priya Manickchand claimed she was punched in her stomach as more police were called in to remove her colleague.
The police, led by Commander of ‘A’ Division, Marlon Chapman, stormed for Edghill while he surrounded by his fellow Parliamentarians and during the process, Manickchand began to cry and scream; the police retreated as Edghill remained grounded in his seat.