GEORGETOWN, December 3, 2022 - Further to a multimillion dollar defamation lawsuit filed against Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo by the Chairman of the International Decade for People of African Descent Assembly- Guyana (IDPADA-G Inc.),Vincent Alexander, the organization has taken the government to court, demanding immediate payment of the funds allocated by parliament and with-held by the government.
The action was filed in the High Court by Attorney-at-law Nigel Hughes against the Attorney General of Guyana; Culture Youth and Sports Minister Charles Ramson Jr., and Finance Minister Ashi Singh, on behalf of IDPADA-G.
In it’s application, IDPADA-G Inc is asking the Court to make a declaration that the refusal by Ministers Ashni Singh and Charles Ramson Jr., to disburse to IDPADA-G, the monthly subvention the government promised and was provided for in repeated Appropriation Acts, is a breach of the Applicant's substantive legitimate expectation to the disbursement of the subvention.
In addition, the failure and or refusal of Ministers Singh and Ramson Jr.,to disburse to the IDPADA-G Inc. the monthly subvention promised and provided for in the Appropriation Act, is wrongful, without lawful excuse or justification, unfair and an abuse of power.
The Court is also being asked to declare that Ministers Ashni Singh and Charles Ramson Jr’s failure and or refusal to disburse the promised monthly subvention to IDPADA-G Inc without notice, and opportunity to be heard, is capricious, malicious. and a breach of the Applicant's procedural legitimate expectation.
IDPADA-G Inc. wants the court to declare that the actions of Ministers Singh and Ramson are a breach of the organization’s right not to be deprived of its property without lawful excuse of justification as guaranteed and protected by article 142 of the constitution of the Co-operative Republic of Guyana.
The organization is seeking from the Court, an order of mandamus directing the Respondents to forthwith pay to the Applicant the subvention promised and duly provided for in the Appropriation Act.
It is also seeking an award of damages in excess of $100.000 ( one hundred thousand dollars) for the wrongful withholding from the Applicant the promised subvention for the period September 2022 and continuing;
In addition, it is seeking Damages in excess of $100000.00 (one hundred thousand dollars) for breach of the Applicant's fundamental right to protection from deprivation of property as guaranteed and protected by A11icle 142 of the Constitution of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana.
At a press conference, Attorney-at-Law Nigel Hughes told reporters that the High Court has been asked to issue a mandatory order directing the government to immediately pay those funds they have already committed to pay.
He noted that government has already committed itself to pay the financial support as the money has been approved in the 2022 National Budget which became the Appropriations Act.
Chairman of IDPADA-G, Vincent Alexander said the monthly subvention, estimated at just over GY$8 million, was stopped in September, 2022 apparently because his organisation had published an advertisement of Cuffy250’s annual forum under the theme “Resisting the Emerging Apartheid States.”
Hughes advised that the Guyana government had breached its contract “without any explanation” to IDPADA-G Inc. because it committed itself to the subvention, sought parliamentary approval and paid it out for the planned work work programme.
“That created what we call in law a contract between the government and IDPADA-G upon which IDPADA-G Inc.relied not only their commitment but their demonstrated acts of making this appropriation available to IDPADA-G and so one of the things,” he said.
Hughes pointed out that IDPADA-G Inc., which is registered as a not-for-profit under the Companies Act, is entitled to the intervention and protection of the court against abuse of power.
He said this was even more glaring since there had been no notice, consultation or engagement about the intention to stop the cash support and so provide an opportunity to be heard. “If the Government of Guyana sought to change its approach, it would have to give notice and invite IDPADA-G or offer them an opportunity to be heard on the reason why they were going to stop this annual appropriation to the association,” Hughes informed.