Dr Anthony's visit set for Oct 22-23

Stabroek News
October 11, 1999

St Lucia's Prime Minister, Dr Kenny Anthony, is scheduled to visit Guyana from October 22 to 23, for discussions with President Bharrat Jagdeo and the leaders and representatives of political parties and civil society. He will also meet the media.

The purpose of his visit, according to a statement from CARICOM Facilitator, Maurice King, is for Dr Anthony "to update himself on, and get first hand knowledge of the progress of the political dialogue and constitutional reform mandated by the Herdmanston Accord and Saint Lucia Statement."

According to the statement too, besides the two major political parties, Dr Anthony will be meeting representatives of some civil society institutions.

Dr Anthony had been assigned the responsibility for monitoring the implementation of the agreements by his CARICOM colleagues at their summit in July. He will report his findings to the Special Meeting of the CARICOM Heads scheduled for Trinidad from October 25 to 26.

The two agreements were aimed at restoring Guyana to normality following the turbulent events that followed the December 1997 general elections. They were signed by then president Janet Jagan as representative of the PPP/Civic and PNC leader, Desmond Hoyte SC, as the representative of his party.

President Jagdeo has signalled that he has responsibility as President for the implementation of the measures of the agreements which he said had become part of Guyana's laws. Earlier, at his first press conference as President, he had said that he was neither the leader of the PPP nor the representative of the PPP/Civic for the purposes of the Herdmanston Accord and St Lucia Statement.

The ongoing measures of the agreements are the political dialogue between the two parties and the constitution reform process. The recommendations of the 20-member Constitution Reform Commission which PPP/Civic parliamentarian, Ralph Ramkarran, SC, chaired, are now being considered by an 11-member parliamentary Select Committee, headed by Parliamentary Affairs Minister, Reepu Daman Persaud.

Another of the Accord measures, the audit of the results of the December 1997 elections by a CARICOM Audit Commission headed by former Trinidad and Tobago Appeal Court judge, Ulric Cross, failed to settle the dispute over the elections.

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Guyana: Land of Six Peoples