PNCR was always confident of a coalition for next elections – Norton

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The People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) –the largest party in the APNU Coalition –said it has always been confident that the APNU and AFC will come to an agreement and return to the polls as a coalition.

PNCR’s executive member Aubrey Norton at a press conference at Congress Place, Sophia on Friday said the party has always felt that the two sides will be able to resolve their issues.

“You will observe that throughout the process, even while statements purporting to be coming from the AFC were coming, the party maintained its position that we will negotiate in good faith and that we were convinced that come March 2020, we will go together and be stronger together, the party hasn’t shifted from that position,” Norton said.

Leaders of the APNU and AFC on Thursday afternoon held high-level talks after which both sides said they will contest the elections together.

However, the AFC had previously said it will go to the polls alone if its demands are not met and even presented a November 18 deadline for the conclusion of the negotiations. One of those demands is that it retains the Prime Ministerial post.

Norton was asked about his party’s position on remarks made by the AFC but he noted that the AFC is independent to make its own choices.

“If you’re asking if the party was uncomfortable with the AFC approach? The AFC is a political party, it has its rights, it is their decision to determine how they approach things, it is our decision to determine how we approach things. We approached it in a way which we thought was mature…I won’t comment on which position is superior,” Norton said.

On Friday at a press conference AFC Leader, Khemraj Ramjattan confirmed that his party has had to give up some of its parliamentary seats to secure a new Cummingsburg accord on which the coalition was formed.

The two sides promised to issue a joint statement following Thursday’s meeting but are yet to do so.

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