Dr. Roopnaraine’s reshuffle to be discussed between President and WPA executives

DPI/GINA, GUYANA, Friday, June 16, 2017

The Working People’s Alliance (WPA) concerns over the shifting of Dr. Rupert Roopnarine’s, ministerial responsibilities are to be discussed at a high-level meeting between President David Granger and the party Executive. The meeting is scheduled to be held on Saturday, June 17 at 10:00hrs at State House, Minister of State Harmon said.

The meeting follows concerns raised by the WPA, the political party that Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine represents in the coalition, A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance for Change (APNU/AFC) government that they were not consulted on his removal from the Ministry of Education to a Ministry within the Ministry of the Presidency (MOTP)

However, Minister Harmon addressing the post-Cabinet press briefing at MOTP today assured that leaders of the party were in fact consulted prior to reshuffling of Dr. Roopnaraine. “Dr. Roopnaraine was moved, the President did consult with the Chairperson of the WPA Desmond Trotman as well as the Leader of the Alliance Raphael Trotman,” Minister Harmon said.

He said that Saturday meeting, which the WPA Excusive has been calling for, will seek to “deal with adequately” the detail of consultations and the concerns that have been expressed by the party.

President Granger announced to Cabinet at its meeting on Tuesday, June 13 of his decision to reassign Dr. Roopnaraine, from the Ministry of Education to the MOTP. Minister Harmon stated that the President explained that after a discussion on Monday, June 12, with Dr. Roopnaraine, it was agreed that Dr. Roopnaraine would be assigned to the post of Minister of Public Service within MOTP.

Dr. Roopnaraine’s new appointment took effect from the June 15, and he remains a member of the Cabinet and a member of the National Assembly.

Cabinet was further briefed that a Department within MOTP would be created to oversee the implementation of innovations and reforms in the education system and that the Minister within the Ministry of Education Nicolette Henry will perform the functions of the Office of the Minister of Education until further notice.

Minister Harmon explained today that Minister Henry would perform the function as substantive Education Minister “until such time as the president in his deliberate judgment consider that there is some other arrangement that needs to be put in place.”

He also said that the President has express the confidence in the ministers to perform in their capacities.

The Minister of State also clarified the role of the new department that will be created within the MOTP to oversee the implementation of innovations and reforms in the education system. He explained that what the creation of the new department does is remove these functions from the Education Ministry and place it into the hands of “a technical set of persons who are being identified for that purpose.”

This special group of persons, the Minister said will pay particular attention to the findings coming out of the recently concluded Commission of Inquiry into state of education, and other areas of concern in the sector that needs to be immediately addressed.

 

By: Macalia Santos

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