PPP begins protests against Government
“We want Elections! Now”
“All APNU/AFC Ministers are illegal”
“Who must go? Granger!”
Those were the chants of over 100 protestors who lined Vlissengen Road, Georgetown, in front of the Ministry of the Presidency calling on the Government to hold General and Regional Elections.
The Coalition Government of A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) was defeated in a vote of No-Confidence in the National Assembly on December 21. The Constitution of Guyana then required the Government to go to the polls within three months. That three month-period came to an end today, but a date had not yet been announced for elections, sparking countrywide protests by opposition supporters.
“The Government is illegal, they must respect the constitution,” one protestor said.
Another shouted, “we need elections.”
“This is very serious, we are going into a crisis,” one young man told the News Room.
The PPP’s protest commenced at Vreed-en-hoop, West Coast Demerara (WCD) and in Mabaruma in Region One. By noon, the Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo joined the protesters outside of the office of the President, saying the President and the Government must go.
Jagdeo told reporters that the protests which will be held in all regions of the country and will be done “sporadically”, in a manner which does not affect the day-to-day lives of ordinary citizens but serves its purpose of forcing the Government out of office.
“We are going to target the Ministers, the President and the Prime Minister. We don’t want to disrupt the lives of ordinary citizens. We don’t want to disrupt the business community, the public servants and other workers across the country,” Jagdeo told the media.
He is not optimistic that the Government will take a constitutional decision by the end of today.
“Knowing this Government and the way they have acted out of disrespect for the constitution, and the rule of law and their constant rhetoric of business as usual, I do not expect them realistically to take any decision in 24 hours…they have to be dragged and pressured,” he said.
The PPP’s Presidential Candidate, Irfaan Ali related to the News Room that the party has been joined by protestors in the diaspora who have chosen to show their support in the “fight for democracy.”
The Court of Appeal will today rule on three appeals before it, seeking to overturn the January 31 ruling of the Chief Justice (ag) Roxanne George-Wiltshire who had ruled that the motion was validly and legally passed and the government cannot continue in office beyond three months unless there is Parliamentary approval for an extension of the elections deadline.