MP files complaint with ERC against Jagdeo’s ‘chase them out’ comments

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The APNU+AFC Region 6 Member of Parliament Barbara Pilgrim has written to the Legal Investigations Officer of the Ethnic Relations Commission (ERC) about remarks made by Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo during his speech to Party supporters at Babu Jaan, Port Mourtant East Berbice Corentyne Sunday.

Mr Jagdeo, at the annual observance of the birth anniversary of its founder, Dr Cheddi Jagan, told hundreds of supporters, “we are going here in Berbice and right across Guyana, when the ministers or Granger or Nagamoottoo come here after the 21st March to say to them, walk behind them, chase them out. They’re gonna be illegal.”

In her letter to the ERC, the Parliamentarian said that Mr Jagdeo’s statement “runs counter to our country’s values of Ethnic Relations and Social Cohesion.

“This statement will only serve to create ethnic tensions and confusion in Region 6 where I reside, and can be interpreted to mean that government and other persons not connected to the People’s Progressive Party Civic PPP/C must not be allowed in this region.”

Pilgrim asked the ERC to apply “its strongest possible sanctions” against the Opposition Leader.

Meanwhile, the Government in a statement Monday condemned the comments by Mr Jagdeo and described it as “belligerent and inciting, inflammatory statements.”

“The Government deems as irresponsible the call by Mr. Jagdeo for citizens to “chase” President David Granger, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo or any government official.

“Mr. Jagdeo’s inciting can result in a breach of the law and must be condemned as unacceptable, malicious and mischievous.

“Mr. Jagdeo has a history of wanton utterances and his most recent at Babu Jaan has serious implications on peace, race relations and national security, particularly in an Election Year,” the Government statement concluded.

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