Just about the only thing that we know for sure about who will be the country’s next Prime Minister is that it will not be the current one. Uncle Sam has done his bit for king and country and can look forward to more parting accolades to add to the Order of Roraima with which he waits to be decorated. No doubt he will continue to wear his now familiar smile of satisfaction in his retirement years…or who knows, if the serving political administration gets the nod again, there may even be a retirement package for its most prominent CIVIC member that might conceivably include a diplomatic posting…or perhaps to one of those Presidential Adviser posts that are now being handed out at will.
As for who is likely to be the next Prime Minister that of course will depend on who breasts the tape first later this year. On the PPP/C side Donald Ramotar has more-or-less brought an end to the speculation that we might have a President-turned- Prime Minister by declaring that if it wins again the ruling party will stick with a CIVIC nominee. That, of course may well be a disappointment for the prominent PPP also rans in the race for the presidential nomination, but that would appear to be the PPP/C’s choice.
Mind you no one remains under any illusions that the CIVIC appendage to PPP is anything but window-dressing designed to create the illusion of inclusivity. CIVIC has no structure, no constituency, no leader and at any rate who’s CIVIC and who’s not these days has become a matter of conjecture.
That having been said we may well, it seems, be on the threshold of having the nation’s first female Prime Minister. On the PPP/C side the names of one or two women are being bandied about and from amongst those names the prospect of perhaps the country’s first Amerindian Prime Minister also arises.
The PNCR’s situation as far as coming up with a Prime Ministerial nominee is concerned is somewhat more complicated. Here, the point should be made that the REFORM wing of the PNC is as much an illusion as is the CIVIC component of the PPP and there is nothing that Sophia has said that leads us to believe that we can anticipate a REFORM Prime Ministerial nominee.
Brigadier Granger is said to have favoured a female Prime Minister, someone who is respected, capable and perhaps with no known traditional party ties. The problem which the PNCR now faces is that it may well not get its own way as far as a Prime Ministerial nominee is concerned. There’s APNU to contend with and from all that we have heard APNU is not about to let the PNCR have all the say in the choice of that candidate. After all, some APNU followers have said, the PNCR already has the presidential candidate so why not give the others a chance to make that second choice. Even on that score there are mixed views. There is a school of thought that says that the new coalition now brings to the table some perfectly worthwhile names like the names of the co-leaders of the WPA and that if competence and political experience counts for anything one of the two might fit the bill. The same school of thought contends that a politically inexperienced presidential candidate should be supported by a politically experienced Prime Minister. Here again more problems could arise since that formula rules out Peter Ramsaroop whose in again, out again, in again antics with the coalition reportedly have everything to do with him desperately wanting to be named Prime Ministerial candidate. More problems might well lie ahead for the coalition since the word is that there are those within the fold that are making an argument for a choice that is based on who brings what to the coalition. Since, that argument goes, Ramsaroop brings little beyond his finely tailored suits he is not deserving of the Prime Ministerial nomination.