Shuman to launch new party next month

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As a result of Friday’s No-Confidence vote against the Government, a political party which was first announced in June of this year, has decided to make an official launch in January 2019.

Former Vice Chair of the National Toshaos Council (NTC), Lenox Shuman, in a Facebook post on Saturday announced that the party will be named “The Liberal and Justice Party – Shaping Guyana’s Future.

It was previously referred to as the Indigenous party, since its formation was sparked by disapproval of the position taken by successive governments on Indigenous People’s issues.

He noted that the launch was initially set for February 9, 2019, but “in light of events that unfolded,” the launch will be no later than mid-January 2019.

“We look forward to your presence and support for a new future for Guyana,” Shuman said.

Shuman disclosed during a November 2018 interview with the News Room that the party members have already crafted a code of conduct and hopes to “restore” integrity to the National Assembly.

In announcing the Party back in June, Shuman premised the move on both the People’s Progressive Party and the current A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) failure to address issues facing the country’s Indigenous population.

However, he later clarified that while its support base is in the Indigenous population, it will be a multi-ethnic party and will address issues ranging from education to security and oil and gas.

Shuman had named John Flores as another member of the new political party. No other members are known at this time.

Flores is a resident of Mabaruma, Region One and is a former commanding officer of the Guyana Coast Guard. He is currently the Director of the Safety at the Maritime Administration Department and President of the Volleyball Federation.

“Like him [Mr Shuman], I feel that the Indigenous peoples have not been given a voice or a proper forum to have their issues highlighted…over the years, they have just been looked at as a number for the larger political parties,” Flores had told the News Room.

Over the years, the Indigenous population, which stood at just over 78,000 in the 2012 population census, have split their votes between the main political parties – PPP/C, APNU and AFC.

At the 2011 and 2015 elections, the PPP/C seemed to have lost its majority votes with the APNU and AFC managing a one seat majority in the National Assembly.

Some believe that an Indigenous based party can weaken the major political forces at the next elections if it manages to get off the ground.

Following the APNU+AFC loss of a No-Confidence vote on Friday, General Elections will be held within 90 days.

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