‘Being a dual citizen is not a crime’, ANUG pushes ahead without Terrence Campbell

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The newly formed political party – A New and United Guyana (ANUG) – says it will advocate for the abolition of the rule prohibiting dual citizens from membership of the National Assembly, noting that it is an “anachronism”, which is not enforced by political parties.

A statement from ANUG late Monday night responded to the sudden withdrawal of one of its founders, business mogul, Terrence Campbell, mere days after the Party was announced.

Mr Campbell, on his Facebook Page, revealed that he decided to leave the new political party as a result of “polarization” in the political climate and the fact that the issue of dual citizenship is being pushed by the APNU+AFC Government in its fight against a No-Confidence vote which toppled the administration on December 21, 2018.

But ANUG, in its statement, emphasized that “being a dual citizen is not a crime. There are thousands of dual citizens living and working in Guyana and some of them are our supporters. We welcome them.”

The Party noted that the issue of dual citizens as Members of the National Assembly came up for discussion at its meeting on Friday last, which was not attended by Mr Campbell.

“…we also acknowledged that in the meantime we will observe the law and will not include any dual citizens on our list of candidates, as the three political parties represented in the National Assembly have always done,” ANUG stated.

Mr Campbell, in walking away from the Party, had stated that the ANUG steering committee probably has three dual citizens.

This is what the Party said in response: “There are only three others of us on the Steering Committee, namely, Henry Jeffrey, Timothy Jonas and Ralph Ramkarran. Terrence is, therefore, accusing all of us of being dual citizens. We will not dignify this worthless accusation, based on hearsay evidence, with a response.”

Terrence Campbell

Mr Campbell, who owns the Church’s Chicken franchise, which has over a dozen stores across Guyana, also alleged that there was a campaign afoot by APNU+AFC supporters to boycott businesses owned by him.

But ANUG noted that its other members too have come under pressure “from official sources very recently, as a consequence of association with ANUG, and in the past.”

“We have endured and survived and expect to continue to do so in the future. We intend to build our movement to offer the Guyanese people an entirely different and creative political choice that will lead to a new and united Guyana.”

See the Party’s full statement below: 

A New and United Guyana (ANUG) has noted a statement publicized by the media indicating that Mr. Terrence Campbell has withdrawn from ANUG. An email on the morning of January 7 by Terrence indicated that he did not feel that he could add value to our efforts in the days ahead. His reason appeared to be the charged political situation arising from the no confidence motion passed by the National Assembly against the Government on December 21. As an aside he alleged that three members of the Steering Committee had dual citizenship.

The email to us was published in the Stabroek News online edition yesterday and the report appeared on other news outlets. It made no reference to “a knife” being stuck in his back by his “own people.” It is clear that Terrence has come under severe pressure because of his leading role in establishing ANUG. Some of us have also come under pressure from official sources very recently, as a consequence of association with ANUG, and in the past. We have endured and survived and expect to continue to do so in the future. We intend to build our movement to offer the Guyanese people an entirely different and creative political choice that will lead to a new and united Guyana.

There are only three others of us on the Steering Committee, namely, Henry Jeffrey, Timothy Jonas and Ralph Ramkarran. Terrence is therefore accusing all of us of being dual citizens. We will not dignify this worthless accusation, based on hearsay evidence, with a response. But we want to emphasize that being a dual citizen is not a crime. There are thousands of dual citizens living and working in Guyana and some of them are our supporters. We welcome them.

This issue of dual citizens as Members of the National Assembly came up for discussion at our meeting on Friday last, which was not attended by Terrence. We confirmed that the rule prohibiting dual citizens from membership of the National Assembly is an anachronism, is not enforced by our political parties and we would advocate its abolition. But we also acknowledged that in the meantime we will observe the law and will not include any dual citizens on our list of candidates, as the three political parties represented in the National Assembly have always done.

We wish Terrence well

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