The Working People’s Alliance ( WPA) today called into question the commitment of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to the rule of law and transparency.
The WPA, a member of opposition coalition APNU, made the statement in the wake of another loan by the IDB to the government despite concerns that the monies could be used for electioneering and over the fact that Parliament remains suspended.
A WPA release follows:
IDB disrespect for Guyanese continues, in tandem with Government’s electioneering
The Working People’ Alliance, the WPA, follows up on its call, as published in the Stabroek News (SN) article, IDB Approves $17.2M environmental loan, dated February 16th, 2015, for the IDB to publicly declare whether this loan has been disbursed, after being published as a single instalment.
To date the IDB has refused the Guyanese public and their parliamentary representative the courtesy of a response. The WPA also reminds the IDB that in excess of two weeks has elapsed since the required date of the dissolution of Parliament and views with suspicion, the approval of a second loan, as published in SN, IDB Signs US$15M Security Loan with Guyana, dated February 24th, 2015. We wish to place on record our strongest condemnation over the egregious actions of the IDB in the face of repeated calls from the Opposition, Guyana Human Rights Association, GHRA, and other Guyanese stakeholders to tread carefully on making loans to the Guyana Government on the eve of national elections.
The WPA further noted the “coincidence” of the approval of the loans by the IDB, the announcement by His Excellency President Donald Ramotar on February 24th, 2015 on the planned dissolution of Parliament, and the announcement of the Government’ plan to distribute 6,000 solar panels to Amerindian Communities out of the IDB funds. The only thing not done so far is for the IDB to endorse the PPP/Civic.
The WPA must now question the IDB’s commitment to transparency, accountability, ethics and the rule of law which the IDB so self-righteously claims for itself. It hopes that the Bank will now accept this offer of self-redemption by openly declaring if any of the above-mentioned loans were disbursed, and if either was, or both of were, its timing and destination. The Bank must be aware that constitutionally such funds must be placed in the Consolidated Fund of Guyana and can only be taken out by way of an Appropriation Act passed by the Parliament.
The Bank’s collusion with the Government at this stage would leave the WPA, in consultation with the members of the joint opposition, no choice but to re-examine the validity of the loans, and by extension its repayment. We are appalled that the IDB could assume arrogantly that it could ignore the legitimate calls by the WPA and indeed the entire parliamentary Opposition to show some restraint in its dealings with the PPP/C Government on the eve of general elections.
It is entirely up to the IDB whether it wishes to further tarnish its developmental record by going into the political bed of the PPP/Civic.
Guyanese wait impatiently.