APNU wants four Local Government Bills on Order Paper for next sitting of the National Assembly
The opposition coalition A Partnership For National Unity (APNU) said that the ‘jostling positions’ of the ruling People’s Progressive Party Civic Government on Local Government reform is a clear indication that the party does not want to go to the polls.
Speaking at its weekly press briefing opposition Member of Parliament Ronald Bulkan said that Local Government elections should not be viewed as a mechanism to take away power from the central executive, but rather to strengthen broken Neighbourhood Democratic Councils and Mayoral bodies.
Bulkan said that that the notion that the Bills cannot be debated, voted and eventually being assented to before the parliamentary recess which commences on August 10, is false.
The Government had earlier indicated that there were substantial differences with two of the four Bills, which are the Local Government Amendment Bill and the Local Government Commission Bill.
Also, President Donald Ramotar said the opposition is trying to use the bills to minimize the role of the Ministry.
But opposition executive Basil Williams explained that the four bills are all part of the local Government reform process, which began some 12 years ago.
APNU insists that Local Government reform which will result in the autonomy of local democratic organs is not a favour that Guyanese people should be asking for, but rather a constitutional requirement.