In a nod to the novel parliamentary configuration thrown up by this year’s elections results, the government and the opposition are to exchange lists of priority issues.
This is the first time since the PPP/C took office in 1992 that it has agreed to a formal exchange of priorities prior to the convening of Parliament.
A joint statement said that at the invitation of President Donald Ramotar, the leaders of A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) and the Alliance For Change (AFC) met with the President yesterday at the Office of the President.
Ramotar was accompanied by Prime Minister Samuel Hinds, Head of the Presidential Secretariat, Dr. Roger Luncheon and Presidential Adviser Gail Teixeira. The APNU delegation comprised David Granger, Rupert Roopnaraine and Joseph Harmon. The AFC delegation comprised Raphael Trotman, Khemraj Ramjattan, Clayton Hall and Gerhard Ramsaroop.
The statement said that during the discussions several issues were raised by the three parties to the discussion and the following was agreed to:
“i) The three parties would by Monday, December 19, 2011 exchange lists of issues for discussion and prioritization at the next meeting scheduled for Wednesday, December 21, 2011;
“ii) The three parties will name two persons each as their plenipotentiaries who will meet after the meeting of December 21, 2011 to work on identified and agreed on priority issues;
“iii) The National Assembly will not be convened in the month of December;
“iv)The Minister of Finance will meet with the two identified finance persons of the APNU and AFC in the near future to consult on the preparation of the Budget 2012.”
Prior to yesterday’s meeting APNU and the AFC had met to work out their approach to the new parliament. They agreed to set up sectoral working groups on the economy and governance.