PRESS RELEASE

COMMUNIQUÉ IS A STEP FORWARD - May 9, 2003

The signing of the Communiqué between President Bharrat Jagdeo and Opposition Leader Robert Corbin is one of the bright spots in our politics in recent times. The agreements in the Communiqué will help to accelerate the full implementation of the new Constitution, a process the PPP led and fully supported.

The agreements can lead to more consensus building and a greater inclusivity at all levels. Our country can be proud of bringing about what must certainly be one of the most inclusive Constitutions in our region, the Commonwealth or the world.

The Committee system in Parliament would certainly put the Executive under greater scrutiny. It is also a very good mechanism for Opposition views to influence the Executive policies and decision-making.

Of particular interest is the constitution of the Ethnic Relations Commission which will certainly go a far way in dealing with many accusations that are made by some opposition politicians and anti-government talk show hosts.

The PPP had hoped that clause 8 which addresses crime would have been stronger. There ought not to be conditions for supporting the Police and condemning forthrightly crime and the criminals. However, the Party welcomes the first joint statement between the Government and the main opposition party condemning crime and support for the police’s anti-crime efforts.

The Communiqué is certainly a positive step forward.

It is expectation of the Party that goodwill will prevail so that all Guyanese can focus their energies on building a strong and prosperous country.