The Members of the Opposition would like to vehemently denounce the draconian and high handed attempts by the Government to stifle as well as deny our Parliamentary right to Private Members’ Day as they run from our motion on the Economy.
In accordance with Standing Order 33 (5), the fourth Friday of each month shall be designated as Private Members’ Day where private motions and bills proposed by the Opposition are debated in the Parliament as they take precedence over government business.
However at Tuesday’s recently concluded Parliamentary sitting, the Government adjourned the House to a date to be fixed, bypassing this Friday’s usual weekly sitting which, in accordance with the standing orders should have been Private Members’ Day.
This was a strategically calculated effort aimed at silencing and preventing the Opposition in a politically malicious manner from executing its role of effectively speaking on behalf of our citizens which has been afforded by the laws that govern the Parliament.
Our country must note that Private Members’ Day is a significant tool which has been placed to ensure that a proper balance is struck within our Republican Parliament to facilitate the even, equitable and effective representation of all citizens inclusive of those who are represented by the Government, those represented by the Opposition as well as those who may not have political representation in the House.
Therefore any dereliction to observe this sacred Parliamentary principle as is the case now can only be viewed as an erosion of democracy, an attack on equal representation and a clear message to our citizens that not all views or voices matter.
By preventing the facilitation of Private Members’ Day, the Government has not only denied the voices of 18 individuals, but they have shut out the concerns of hundreds of thousands of citizens who elected these Opposition Members to Parliament.
The Government’s actions were simply desperate, cowardly attempts to hide from the Opposition’s upcoming motion on the economy in the name of MP Tewarie. They couldn’t face up to the evidence which would have been presented to show that they have failed our economy.
They realized that in our previous Private Motions we have exposed their unabated incompetence and poor governance.
It is unfortunate, insulting and detrimental to our nation’s citizens that as opposed to facing these debates with answers, plans and solutions they have decided to wrongfully tear apart as well as disregard the Westminster Whitehall Parliamentary system which has faithfully served this nation since independence.
As an Opposition we call on the Government to respect our Parliament, respect our people and have Private Members’ Day.