‘Broad agreement’ after Granger/Jagdeo talks

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President David Granger and Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo have concluded talks at the Ministry of the Presidency, with the President saying there was “broad agreement” on how the Executive Government and the National Assembly will continue to function.

“Both the Opposition Leader and the President are concerned about the situation.

“We would like to assure the public in Guyana that we are working to a solution which they will be satisfied with.

“The public interest is our paramount concern,” Granger said in a statement.

He added that neither the Government nor the National Assembly could be allowed to fail.

“Public services have to be delivered; public order has to be maintained.”

The Opposition Leader said it was a “good” meeting and he would speak at a press conference Wednesday afternoon.

Attorney General Basil Williams also indicated that a joint communique would be issued.

The meeting was the first to be held following the December 21 vote of No- Confidence in which the Government was defeated after one of its Parliamentarians – Charrandass Persaud – voted with the Opposition, slanting the vote 33/32 in favour of the Opposition.

The Government initially said it would respect the vote and call elections in three months but has since challenged the validity of vote.

The High Court is being asked to deem Mr Persaud’s vote invalid because he is a citizen of Canada.

The Government is arguing that 34 votes and not 33 should be considered a majority in the 65-seat National Assembly and is, therefore, asking the court to set aside the decision of the House.

The President in a statement said the recourse to the court is “legitimate.”

Regarding the holding of general and regional elections, he said the Government and the Opposition would continue to engage the Guyana Elections Commission “to ensure elections are held” within the administrative capacity to hold elections.

The President said there was no intention on the part of the Government to derail the constitutional and legislative process.

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