Impasse over anti-laundering bill isn’t grounds for new elections

– opposition leaders

The stalemate over the anti-money laundering bill is not good enough grounds for calling general elections, according to the opposition parties.

“I don’t think so. I think the issue could be resolved. I don’t think this is a matter that requires general elections,” leader of the main opposition APNU David Granger told Stabroek News when contacted yesterday. His position was echoed by AFC leader Khemraj Ramjattan. “At this stage no, we don’t feel we should call general elections just because the anti-money laundering bill has not been passed,” he said.

Attorney-General Anil Nandlall declined to comment and pointed to a statement he made on Face-book. “I don’t want to speculate about elections. It’s not a matter for me,” he said.

The Caribbean Finan-cial Action Task Force (CFATF) last week called for countries in the region to step up countermeasures against Guyana over its failure to update its anti-money laundering legislation. The regional body also referred Guyana to the international Financial Action Task Force (FATF). Despite this, neither government nor the opposition parties have signalled a shift towards compromise for the passage of the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) (Amendment) Bill, which has been stuck in the National Assembly for over a year. President Donald Ramotar has called on the opposition to “unconditionally” pass the bill, while taking no responsibility for the country’s regional blacklisting. Granger has said that APNU still does not see any reason to change its position. APNU wants its proposed amendments added to the principal legislation and it has asked that President Ramotar assent …..To continue reading, login or subscribe now.

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