Leader of the Opposition Bharrat Jagdeo has accused the governing coalition of attempting to “deplete the leadership” of the People’s Progressive Party/Civic by filing frivolous charges against frontrunners for the post of Presidential Candidate.
“It’s about the serious aspirants that they believe would pose a threat to them. This Government doesn’t have to find much to charge people… just imagine after hearing about the tens of millions that were misappropriated, look at the nature of the charges against our Members of Parliament so far you will see how frivolous they are given the accusations that were made…the point is not winning cases the point is damaging reputations…so any charge will suffice. When we discuss that issue, we’ll have to examine that but they can charge anyone, they can make any claim. I wouldn’t put it past them,” he told a press conference last week.
Following a decision by the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) to uphold the country’s presidential term-limit, a decision which prevents Jagdeo from leading the party into the 2020 elections, there has been much interest and speculation about who the candidate will be.
Jagdeo had previously noted that as General Secretary he had a responsibility to lead the process that will end up with a presidential candidate, but later clarified that contrary to rumours that he will choose the next candidate, it is the party’s 35-member Central Committee that will make that choice unless it decides otherwise.
He noted that this has been the case for all elections held over the past two decades. The Central Committee through a secret ballot, he said, also voted for him to be appointed the General Secretary of the party.
Last week he stressed that the Committee would have to take into consideration the likelihood of charges being laid against it members when it discusses possible presidential candidates.