Local Gov’t Bill not assented to, due to its unconstitutionality – President
Georgetown, GINA, November 8, 2013
President Donald Ramotar today explained to the media that his non-assent to the Amended Local Government Bill was due to the fact that the PNC/R now APNU reneged on a promise made during a series of meetings with the ruling administration.
“Before this parliament came into existence, we had an agreement with the PNC; we had a full agreement with the opposition, the PNC then. This parliament they have decided to change it. Not only have they changed it, which in my view is unprincipled, but they have also made it unconstitutional. They have tried to take the authority of the minister and invest it into a commission. That goes against the constitution, that’s why I didn’t assent to it,” he told members of media after a press conference today.
The President assented to three local government bills, namely the Fiscal Transfers Bill 2012, Municipal and District Councils (Amendment) Bill, and the Local Government Commission Bill and this was announced on November 5.
President Ramotar had said that it was not the lack of political will on the part of the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Administration that local government elections were not held in Guyana since 1994. Prior to 1994, local government elections were last held in 1970. Subsequent to 1994, the elections could not be conducted because of the coincidence with the general and regional elections of 1997.