‘MPs are not collecting monies under false pretence’- Edghill


People’s Progressive Party (PPP) Parliamentarian Juan Edghill has confirmed that the party’s MPs have been collecting monthly salaries even though they have not attended any sittings of the National Assembly since December 21, 2018.

But he was quick to note that this is not being done under “false pretence.”

“It’s normal at the time of dissolution. It is not that MPs are collecting monies under false pretence,” Edghill told the media on Monday at the sidelines of an event at the Parliament Buildings, Georgetown.

There have been four sittings of the National Assembly since December 21, 2018, when the No-Confidence Motion against the Government was passed.

The Opposition MPs have not attended any of those sittings as they pressured the coalition government to dissolve Parliament and set a date for General and Regional Elections.

Clerk of the National Assembly, Sherlock Isaacs told the News Room on Monday that all MPs are being paid. He said he is still tasked with ensuring that their salaries are transferred.

Meanwhile, Edghill told the media that the Opposition is prepared to stop receiving their salaries when the Parliament is dissolved.

“The President has not dissolved Parliament which he should do and we’re calling for that dissolution, we’re not hiding from dissolution, we’re demanding dissolution,” Edghill said.

“We have called on a principled position and we will continue to make that call, that the President needs to dissolve the National Assembly and make a proclamation. At the time of the dissolution of the National Assembly [those] are administrative things that need to be done which would also entail the stopping of payment of non-ministerial MPs. That should be the normal thing,” he added.

President David Granger has signed the proclamation for the holding of elections on March 02, 2020 but he has not yet dissolved the Parliament.

In his address to the nation on September 25, the President said the Government must return to the National Assembly to request an extension to the date of the elections.

The President’s statement came days after the United States, United Kingdom and the European Union said without an election the government is in breach of the constitution and that this “hinders” their ability to support Guyana’s development needs.

According to Article 106(7) of the Constitution of Guyana, if the Government is holding an election after three months of being defeated by a motion of No-Confidence, it needs the support of two-thirds of the members of the National Assembly.

The National Assembly comes out of a two-month recess on October 10 but the Opposition again said it will not attend the next sitting or grant an extension to the life of the Government.

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