Who will replace Nigel Dharamlall in Parliament?
The governing People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) is expected to name a new Member of Parliament following the resignation of Minister of Local Government and Regional Development Nigel Dharamlall.
Dharamlall was chosen as a Parliamentarian for Region Two (Pomeroon- Supenaam) on the Geographic List of Candidates for the PPP in the 2020 General and Regional elections.
For context, under Guyana’s electoral system, 25 of the 65 Members of Parliament are elected from the 10 geographical constituencies; the remaining 40 are pulled from the national top-up list.
In Region Two, besides Dharamlall, the other geographical constituency candidates were: Vilma De Silva, Arnold Adams and Nandranie Coonjah. These are the only names published in the Official Gazette.
So, essentially one of them must be selected to fill the vacant seat left with Dharamlall’s resignation.
De Silva, a successful businesswoman in the coconut industry, currently serves as the Regional Chairman. Adams is is the Prime Minister’s representative in Region Two. Coonjah is a food caterer, who has been recognised for her work with the school’s feeding programme and a Commissioner on the Women and Gender Equality Commission.
Once the Speaker of the National Assembly receives Dharamlall’s resignation, he (the Speaker) will then write GECOM to say a vacancy has been created. GECOM will then write the PPP to extract one of the names from the list to fill the seat left vacant by Dharamlall.
There has been no word yet on who will be chosen as the replacement.
Dharamlall’s resignation was announced late Tuesday night by President Dr. Irfaan Ali, who is in Trinidad and Tobago for the annual Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Heads of Government meeting.
The resignation follows allegations by a schoolgirl that she was raped by Dharamlall; but she later said she did not wish further action in the case. The Director of Public Prosecutions subsequently advised the Police that there is no case to proceed with.