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|Another political gimmick|
|Friday, 27 July 2012 21:28|
The political opposition seems to have gone an all-out campaign to have Home
Affairs Minister Clement Rohee removed from office and has even moved a motion, which violated parliamentary norms and conventions, to this effect. It would therefore appear that the focus is no longer on the electricity tariff but on the removal of Mr. Rohee who allegedly is responsible for the tragic deaths of three Lindeners as a result of protests in the mining town.
What is most absurd about the opposition’s stance is that they have called for a commission of inquiry into the tragic events which the government has agreed to, but yet even before the establishment of this commission the opposition has assumed the portfolios of judge, jury and executioner and has arrived at a verdict of Mr. Rohee being guilty. How much more absurd can the opposition become? It also begs the question: what is the purpose of the commission if the opposition has already decided on who is culpable and who is not?
The essential issue is that no fingers should be pointed at anyone before the commission of enquiry has completed its work which Minister of Legal Affairs and Attorney-General Anil Nandlall has explicitly pointed out in the National Assembly.
Nandlall, quoting from the Constitution, alluded to Article 183, which clearly states on what grounds such an official can be removed.
The Attorney-General said he recognised that what transpired in Linden on July 18 last, when three protestors were shot and killed, is a tragedy that is beyond disputation.
“The President, exercising powers which reside in him under the Commission of Inquiry Act, committed himself to the establishment of a Commission to inquire into this tragedy…only the Commission of Inquiry could determine the Home Affairs Minister responsible,” the Attorney-General argued.
He explained that the motion in its entirety is one that “pre-empts, prejudices and undermines” the integrity of a process to which parties would have committed themselves, as the call is being made for Minister Rohee to resign and for the members of the National Assembly to vote that they have no confidence in him.
“The legal truth of the matter is that Mr. Rohee does not hold office due to the confidence of this Assembly…a Minister is appointed under the constitution by the President…he comes here as an elected official…therefore, only the President can remove him,” Minister Nandlall said.
He added that making such a call for the Minister of Home Affairs to go, is an indication that there is a conclusion that he is responsible. However, that decision is to be made by the Commission of Inquiry.
“We can speak here in this parliament from now till thy kingdom come but, the fact remains that the National Assembly has no power of removal of a minister,” the Attorney General posited.
The opposition has many lawyers among its membership and supporters so it obviously has to be aware of the legal emptiness of the motion, but it is attempting to use the issue to rile up its supporters and apply pressure to the government to see if it would buckle under this pressure, and if it does then would move the goal posts and make further demands. So the opposition is clearly testing the waters to see how far it can go and gain as much political mileage as possible. In fact, what happened in Linden on that tragic day was a carefully planned and orchestrated strategy by the opposition and to a large extent got the results they desired
However, it is instructive to note that President Donald Ramotar has made it clear that he will not be removing Mr. Rohee.
However, what is of great relevance is the fact that the opposition did not utter a word of condemnation when the criminals, who were dubbed “freedom fighters of the resistance,” were slaughtering policemen during the terrible crime spree following the 2002 jailbreak. Their silence on the killing of the policemen was deafening and therefore it was implicit that they were supportive of the criminals and this was confirmed by telephone conversations between senior opposition members and a former Top Cop which came to light.
This is the hypocrisy and opportunism of the opposition and its cohorts. It continuously distorts issues to create ammunition to use against the government in its relentless battle for political power.
|Last Updated on Friday, 27 July 2012 21:29|
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