Harmon officially resigns from Parliament
Joseph Harmon, who resigned as Leader of the Opposition earlier this year and signalled his intention to resign as a Member of Parliament, has officially tendered his resignation.
This was confirmed by the Clerk of the National Assembly Sherlock Isaacs on Tuesday.
Earlier in March, Harmon submitted a letter that stated his “intention” to resign from the National Assembly on March 15. Since then, there have been concerns that an “intention to resign” is not the same as an official resignation.
But Isaacs told the News Room that Harmon submitted a new letter of resignation on Monday; that letter was forwarded to the Speaker Manzoor Nadir on Tuesday.
Asked about the language of the new letter, the Clerk said that it reads: “I hereby tender my resignation with effect from the 15th of March.”
And this letter, Isaacs said, confirms Harmon’s resignation.
Importantly, the National Assembly has not been informed of who from the APNU+AFC coalition will replace Harmon in the National Assembly.
The coalition has 31 seats in the National Assembly; a joinder list of A New United Guyana (ANUG), the Liberty and Justice Party (LJP) and The New Movement (TNM) has one seat. Altogether, these parties encompass the Parliamentary Opposition.
Meanwhile, the ruling People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) government has 33 seats in the House. There are 65 seats in the National Assembly.
When he resigned as Leader of the Opposition in January, Harmon had said that he would remain a Member of Parliament for the APNU+AFC Coalition.
The News Room understands that following his failed attempt to seize the leadership of the PNC/R during the December 2021 Congress, Harmon was confronted by weekly manoeuvres from party comrades to give up the post to new PNC/R Leader Aubrey Norton.
But it was Former Education Minister Dr. Nicolette Henry who gave up her parliamentary seat to make way for Norton. Her resignation takes effect on March 31, 2022, however, and that has since delayed Norton’s chance of getting to Parliament until April.
The APNU+AFC remains in turmoil since its attempts to rig the March 2020 national elections. It has been over a month now since the Opposition has been without an Opposition Leader.