Pres. Ali dismisses Opposition’s No-Confidence motions as ‘political drama’
President Irfaan Ali on Wednesday dismissed two No-Confidence motions filed by the APNU+AFC Coalition at the parliamentary level against the Ministers of Health and Home Affairs, Dr. Frank Anthony and Robeson Benn.
The Head of State said that the one-line documents lacked effort and as a consequence, lost their meaningfulness.
“If you are going to do something meaningful you should put effort [into] it. Have you seen it? The motion is one line. They didn’t spend time to put effort.
“It is just political drama and it has no thinking or structure or work behind it… it’s just political drama and I don’t have time for that,” the President said at the sidelines of an event on Wednesday.
Dr. Ali said his interest and focus remain on delivering on his promise and commitment to the Guyanese people.
“The Home Affairs and Health [Ministries] have been doing just that,” he added.
Dr. Ali posited that the filing of the motions gives the government an opportunity to once again tell the Guyanese public of what the government inherited in these two sectors and what has happened since.
“… but mark my word, our commitments will be kept.”
On Tuesday, Opposition Leader, Joseph Harmon delivered the motions to the Clerk of the National Assembly, Sherlock Isaacs.
Harmon believes that the management of the COVID-19 crisis in Guyana has been woeful and that crime in all forms is on an astronomical increase in Guyana.
Speaker of the National Assembly, Manzoor Nadir will now have to decide whether the motions meet the requirements of the Standing Orders and whether it can be sent to the House for debate.
Other government MPs have said they are prepared to defend the performance of the two ministers during that debate.
Back in 2012, then Opposition Leader and now former President, David Granger had tabled a Motion of No-Confidence against government minister, Clement Rohee.
Although the parliamentary opposition had passed the motion using the one-seat majority it held, Rohee continued to sit in the National Assembly. With the Opposition insisting on barring Rohee from participating in the business of the House, the No Confidence vote was challenged in Court.
Minister of Governance and Parliamentary Affairs, Gail Teixeira recalled that incident on Wednesday, reminding that it is only by using the Recall Legislation that a Minister of the Government can be removed.
According to Teixeira, a MP can only be removed if that person has died, becomes incapacitated, mentally unfit or when the party they represent no longer has confidence in them.
The legislation states that only the political leader of a list of candidates that contested the general and regional elections can remove a MP after “meaningful consultation” at the party level; in this case, it would be the President, Dr Irfaan Ali, who can remove either Benn or Dr Anthony.