It might be very much premature to suggest that the opposition parliamentary majority has fallen at the first hurdle but it certainly appears as though they have hit that hurdle……HARD. Now every follower of track and field knows that when you hit a hurdle it takes a few strides to get back into your running form and it appears that the APNU/AFC opposition is taking quite a few strides. Now the PPP/C has proposed that Mr. Ramkarran have another go at being Speaker, Now whether that choice is a good or bad one is really beside the point. The fact is, however, that one is beginning to think that the PPP/C believes that the position of Speaker of the National Assembly is the only position that Mr. Ramkarran is good enough for. After all everyone knows that he was far from pleased when he was passed over for the Presidential nomination and, moreover, for even a position in the Ramotar Cabinet. There are those who believe that Mr. Ramkarran is senior to Anil Nandlall – by a long way – and might perhaps have been given the job of Attorney General. After all the new Attorney General comes to the job having just been cut to ribbons, legally, that is, by the man whom ex-President Jagdeo said not too long ago would never become a Senior Counsel under his watch. Well………that watch has ended and now we must wait and see just what His Excellency will do about that Senior Counsel appointment……But that’s another story.
To return to the matter at hand having, it appears, denied Mr. Ramkarran a place at the table which many people believe he deserves, the PPP/C wants to give him another crack at being Speaker of the House. Not surprising that the opposition has turned it down flat but that is only the beginning of the story. The AFC is touting Moses…Not surprising. Recall that Raphael Trotman had said that there would be a place at the opposition table for Moses if he came over. Well Moses did come over and there are those who argue that quite a few PPP/C supporters came over with him and that that might have been critical to the one-seat majority which the collective opposition has in the National Assembly. Moses, however, is a ‘no, no’ with APNU. They want Debbie Backer. Either will probably make a good Speaker but then it’s a question of who gets to choose the Speaker. Funny enough the mathematics of the new National Assembly means that in this instance the larger number of seats is really no stronger than the smaller number. Either side can checkmate the other.
Now we are hearing that rather than go into a huddle and talk the thing through, a hardball game has started. The AFC we are told has thrown down a giant-sized gauntlet………No Moses and we abstain on the vote. That means that both Moses and Debbie are out. Ramkarran gets in. Not a particularly auspicious start to the much-vaunted opposition parliamentary majority. But then, perhaps, it’s no more than we expected. Some people may even argue that there is as wide a gulf between the AFC and APNU as there is between APNU and the PPP/C. After all, while Brigadier Granger was saying prior to the announcement of the ballot that APNU would only accept the result if what GECOM said tallied with the SOP’s, Ramjattan made it clear that the AFC would run with whatever GECOM put on the table. It should be noted too that the AFC ran the proverbial mile from APNU’s post-elections protest, offering no more than a sharp verbal rap of the knuckles of the police after the Rubber Bullets incident.
But as they say teeth and tongue will bite though we must hope that the biting does not turn into the kind of mauling that we see at those illegal dog fights that are becoming more and more popular across the country. Of course, that is one dog fight which the PPP/C will be only too happy to legalize.