PNC/R into mode of `non-cooperation' with government
Ludicrous says PPP/C
Stabroek News
April 19, 2002

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Leader of the PNC/R Desmond Hoyte announced yesterday that his party would adopt a policy of active non-cooperation with the ruling PPP/Civic government with immediate effect.

"As from today, the party will have no form of cooperation with the regime in any new areas, other than to facilitate constitutional mandates and outstanding constitutional reforms, until existing grievances have been fully settled," Hoyte told reporters at a press conference hosted by the PNC/R.

A statement issued last evening by the PPP/C dismissed the statement as ludicrous.

The PPP/C pointed out that the PNC/R had already put the dialogue process on pause and implemented its threats of extra-parliamentary action. The PNC/R did not participate in the budget debate this year.

Hoyte said that since the PPP/Civic had marginalised Parliament and reduced it to a state of virtual inconsequence, the PNC/R would embark on various non-parliamentary and extra-parliamentary forms.

"The party will intensify its work to oppose the regime's bad policies and relentlessly expose its corruption, incompetence and general misgovernment," Hoyte said. "We will robustly exercise our constitutional rights, as well as those democratic prerogatives enshrined in the CARICOM Charter of Civil Liberties, to bring this recalcitrant regime to a proper understanding of its obligation to administer the affairs of this country in a fair, honest and just way."

Hoyte, who is also the leader of the opposition, said the dialogue process between himself and President Bharrat Jagdeo would not resume until the government delivered on the promises made during the process.

He said among the issues the PNC/R wanted resolved were the presentation in parliament of the state paper on housing, the electrification of De Kinderen and the constitution of the Ethnic Relations Commission. These are works in progress and the government and President Jagdeo had charged that Hoyte was fully aware of this.

"Jagdeo has to get beyond the promises and begin to deliver. When this happens then I will consider talking again," Hoyte said.

In a joint statement issued by President Jagdeo and the private sector yesterday, the private sector indicated its willingness to assist in the resumption of the dialogue process.

Hoyte said the party's position was a principled one so the PNC/R was not perturbed by the abuse and threats with which the PPP/C has reacted through Dr Roger Luncheon, head of the Presidential Secretariat. "The PPP/C knows quite well that the PNC/R cannot and will not be cowed or intimidated by threats and will not be deterred from discharging its responsibility to the people of this country," he stated.