Jagdeo's stance on UNDP's Sorenson 'reckless'
rights group
Stabroek News
July 13, 2004

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President Bharrat Jagdeo's no-confidence vote in UN Resident Representative Jan Sand Sorenson is reckless, according to the Caribbean Guyana Institute for Democracy (CGID).

The group is calling on Jagdeo to substantiate his statements on Sorenson, who he accused of dealing in matters that were not part of his remit.

"CGID demands that President Jagdeo state immediately the `matters outside Mr. Sorenson's remit...' which have led the President to demonstrate such public contempt and disregard for the UN office in Guyana," the group said in a statement. It also urged the international community to reassess its relations with Guyana as a result of the government's actions.

Observers say the president's pronouncement was just as if the government had asked for Sorenson's recall.

Meanwhile, Stabroek News understands that the UNDP office has noted the President's statement and is awaiting a formal response from the UN Headquarters.

Sorenson is currently at a planning meeting in Argentina after which he is to proceed home for leave until August 30.

It is believed that Jagdeo is upset over a statement issued by the local UNDP office, advising that there should be consultation with all the stakeholders on the commission of inquiry set up to investigate the death squad allegations.

The CGID noted that this is not the first time that government has attempted to emasculate the UN office, recalling that in 1994 it rejected and refused to accept the credentials of a representative from Gambia.