Following Friday's no-confidence motion that was passed against the incumbent coalition government after an AFC member of parliament, Charrandas Persaud voted in support of the opposition-led motion, general elections are constitutionally required within 90 days.
As a result, the parties that make up the coalition government have begun mobilising for elections. A key position is that of the Presidential candidate for the A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) + Alliance for Change (AFC) coalition.
Chairman of the People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR), Volda Lawrence is reported by the Guyana Chronicle as saying: “Stop crying, stop sending up your pressure and instead of that, comrades, let us consolidate our efforts, let us get out there and let us work towards ensuring that David Arthur Granger is returned as the President of Guyana.”
Speaking at an event organised on Christmas Eve by the coalition government, Lawrence also sought to assure citizens that the no-confidence motion should not be a cause for fear or much worry. “We are in government and we must ensure that we remain in government. We have our policies, we have our programmes and we must be given the opportunity to execute those,” she said.
On Sunday also, Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs Basil Williams similarly hinted that President Granger will return as the Presidential candidate. Notwithstanding the President being diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma earlier this year after being unwell for a number of weeks, Williams said: “The President has big plans and projections for this future with him being President of Guyana.”
Both Williams and Lawrence belong to the PNCR, and at the party’s Biennial Congress held earlier this year, President Granger was re-elected as the leader of that party. And traditionally, it is the party’s leader who takes up the role as presidential candidate.
At his press conference in August, Granger did not rule out the possibility of running for President at the next general elections. In fact, he remarked that if nominated by his party he would not “run away from service” and posited: “I am a servant of my party, I am a servant of the partnership and I am a servant of the coalition and my duty is to serve.”
The Cummingsburg Accord of 2015 which created the coalition, provides for the Presidential candidate for the coalition coming from APNU.
The AFC has been allocated the Prime Ministerial position which has the PM chairing cabinet and having responsibility for home affairs.
Through this accord, the AFC will also holds 40 per cent of the Cabinet positions while the larger portion—the 60 per cent of the cabinet positions—goes to the five political parties encompassed in the APNU, of which the PNCR is a major constituent.
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