Executive Members of the Central Executive Committee (CEC) of the People’s National Congress/Reform (PNC/R) said while they are committed to Coalition Politics and the Rule of Law, they cannot and will not sit idly by and allow the Leader of the PNC/R, David Granger, and the General Secretary, Amna Ally to override the Constitution by disregarding the decision of the CEC.
“The CEC that is directly elected to represent the members of the PNCR believes that the Constitution of the Party must be followed and rejects the attempt by the Leader and General Secretary of the PNCR to disregard the decision of the CEC that directed the Party to place on hold, the issue of sanctioning the addition of two new political outfits to the APNU until the issue is thoroughly discussed by the Party,” a group of CEC Executives said in a statement on Wednesday.
CEC Executive Member, Dr. Richard Van-West Charles, on behalf of the group of CEC Executives, made it clear that the CEC will not be bullied into silence.
“Mr Granger has failed to make the transition from diktat to democrat, and we have no choice but to view this defiance as rogue behaviour which we will address within the provisions of our constitution at our next CEC meeting, and no amount of telephone bullyism and intimidation will deter the CEC from representing the Party’s membership and preserving its constitution,” Dr. Van-West Charles said.
The Party Leader has remained resolute in his decision to add the Equal Rights and Justice Party (ERJP) and Guyana Nation Builders Movement (GNBM) to the A Partnership for National Unity (APNU). Last Friday during his Public Interest Programme, Granger said APNU will be stronger with the two parties added. But the CEC Executives said the PNC/R Leader uttered the statement knowing fully well that the CEC had been rejected his unilateral decision.
“It is therefore an affront to the entire Party for the Leader and the General Secretary to violate the Party’s Constitution and expect to not be sanctioned. The Party’s organs must be respected, and their decisions adhere to. The Party Leader and General Secretary therefore have no authority to override the decisions of the CEC,” the group of CEC Executives said.
Dr. Van-West Charles said the Party’s constitution provides that the highest decision making body is the Biennial Congress, followed by the General Council and then the CEC. He said therefore, the CEC, as an elected body, represents the membership of the PNCR, and is not merely a rubber stamp.
He said while the CEC is not against any party joining the APNU or the Coalition, it is important for the party’s constitution to be followed.
“The APNU cannot unilaterally bind the party and then the PNCR seek approval afterwards. Therefore, the reps of the PNCR on the APNU cannot vote for the admission of parties without the approval of CEC, plain and simple,” Dr. Van-West Charles reasoned.
The CEC Executives said the recent attempts by the Party’s General Secretary to white wash the issue is also in defiance of the CEC.
“The notion by the GS that the APNU can decide on a matter and then bring it to the PNCR is beyond ridiculous. It amounts to the PNCR committing itself to a decision within the APNU without internal approval and then having the option of voting against its own decision at the level of the PNCR. That makes the APNU appear to be a “shell” organisation and an attempt to make the PNCR a shell too. That is not going to happen,” Dr. Van-West Charles said.
He reminded that decisions taken by the CEC several months ago have not been acted upon.
“We took decisions months ago, in the presence of the Party Leader and the General Secretary to discuss, with the aim of making decisions, matters relating to the APNU and the Coalition, and the recent General and Regional Elections, and to date we have not had those discussions. It is clear the Leader does not believe that he is bound by decisions of the CEC, which is most unfortunate for him, because we intend to ensure that the Party’s constitution is followed,” Dr. Van-West Charles pointed out.
Reiterating that the PNCR is committed to coalition politics, he urged that the CEC discuss the state of the partnership as agreed to at a previous CEC.
“The CEC had hoped that its decision last Wednesday would have been followed by the Leader and General Secretary, reflecting a return to democratic principles and conduct within the Party,” the CEC Executives said.