PNC/R as main opposition party unites with gov’t on border controversy
The People’s National Congress Reform (PNC/R) as the main opposition party that led the government for the last five years, on Friday noted its support for the new People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) government against Venezuela’s claims to Guyana’s Essequibo region.
During a virtual press briefing Friday morning, party leader (ag) Volda Lawrence said the PNC/R notes with concern the recent utterances by the Venezuelan government in relation to the full and final settlement of the border controversy.
Lawrence, who is the Party’s substantive Chairman, reiterated the firm support for responses to securing the nation’s territorial integrity.
“Therefore, we urge the government to take all measures to ensure the citizens of Guyana remain united on this critical issue,” Lawrence added.
On September 6, 2021, an agreement was signed by the Heads of Delegation of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and the Unity Platform of Venezuela in Mexico City. It is essentially Venezuela’s government and opposition uniting on the country’s claim to Guyana oil-rich Essequibo and is seen even by the government as an overt threat to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Guyana.
“Guyana cannot be used as an altar of sacrifice for settlement of Venezuela’s internal political differences. While the Government of Guyana welcomes domestic accord within Venezuela, an agreement defying international law and process is not a basis for mediating harmony,” a government statement released on September 7, 2021 noted.
The controversy between Guyana and Venezuela is currently before the International Court of Justice and will remain there for peaceful resolution. Shadow Minister of Foreign Affairs, Amanza Walton Desir, has also issued a statement rejecting the agreement signed.
President Irfaan Ali had formally notified Heads of Government in the region about the accord made between the Government of Venezuela and its Opposition and received the support of those countries for a peaceful settlement.
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled last December that it has jurisdiction to decide Guyana’s claim against Venezuela that the boundary between the two States was fixed in an 1899 Arbitral Award.
Venezuela is opposed to the ICJ and its ruling. Guyana is, however, seeking to obtain a final and binding judgment that will clearly state that the Essequibo region is indisputably part of this country.
President Ali on Sunday last said that the ruling is the law and that Guyana would see it through.
“We have embraced that route, which is the ICJ and we’re committed to that route. That route is the rule of law and that is where the matter resides, not in any sideshow or any other engagement.”
The President said that the countries that arranged the meeting to resolve Venezuela’s internal issues, should understand that the controversial agreement is anything but internal.