Dear Editor,I am a member of the Private Sector Commission (PSC) Council and a member of the Governance and Security Sub-Committee. I have been intimately involved in all of the press statements made by the Sub-Committee in relation to the passing of the No-confidence Motion in the National Assembly.I have, therefore, decided to write, expressing my growing concern at the repeated and totally specious attacks on the accuracy of the statements and on the credibility of the Commission by Rickford Burke. Burke resides safely in the USA and, of course, bears no responsibility for, nor does he suffer, the consequences in Guyana for anything he says or writes.I remember Burke – when I was a member of the Cabinet – as a young enthusiastic but radical extremist member of the People’s National Congress. Age, it seems, has neither tempered his extremism nor given him the wisdom of reason.In fact, our country faces extremely severe consequences as a result of our Government’s persistence in ignoring the constitutional requirement which followed the event of a no-confidence motion in the National Assembly on December 21, 2018.In fact, our President has placed his Government in a position of grievously violating the constitutional provisions of Articles 106 (6) and has signalled a similar intention with regard to Article 106 (7) to function outside of the country’s supreme law which he swore to uphold.I have had a long and valued friendship with David Granger before his election as President and I have continued to hold the highest regard and respect for him, but find his Government’s behaviour, with regard to the effect of the No-confidence Motion respecting his Cabinet and Government, unacceptable.The PSC, whose responsibility it is to speak for the stability and well-being of the business community and for the maintenance of the rule of law in the country, is perfectly within its mandate to defend and respect the Constitution. Equally, the PSC’s mandate is to insist on adherence to the Constitution and the rule of law by all of the political parties, whether in or out of government.The PSC’s statements hold no political partiality. They are strictly confined to fact. They embrace no brief for nor opposition to any political party. The Commission’s statements do, however, quite properly, confront the reality of the very serious economic, political and social consequences for Guyana arising from the Government ignoring the Constitution and behaving outside of the law.It is a fact that the no-confidence vote remains valid, as recognised by the Speaker of the National Assembly, Barton Scotland, and ruled on by the Chief Justice, Roxane George.It is a fact that Cabinet is resigned along with the President as head of the Cabinet as required by the Constitution and as was confirmed by the ruling of the Chief Justice.It is a fact that all Members of Parliament serving as Ministers who hold dual citizenship must now resign their portfolios and cease to function as Ministers, as, indeed, must all dual citizens currently in the National Assembly, from all the political parties, resign from being members of the Assembly.It is a fact that the President and his Ministers, excluding those of dual citizenship, remain in office until March 21, 2019, but may no longer function as a Cabinet and only until within the period mandated by the Constitution.It is a fact that Article 106 (7) of the Constitution requires elections to be held no later than March 21, 2019, unless a two thirds majority vote of the Assembly extends that date. It is a fact that this constitutional imposition is not delayed by any appeal filed against the ruling of the Chief Justice.It is a fact that the President and his Government, through the Attorney General, have the right to appeal the ruling of the High Court but, it is also a fact that the rulings of the High Court remain in place and active and that the President and Government must, by law, act as so ruled unless overruled by a higher court.It is a fact that GECOM, under the law, as is required by the Constitution, must be prepared to hold a General Election whenever it is due and specifically prescribed by the Constitution.It is a fact that GECOM, including the Chief Elections Officer, judged from their own public statements and those of the Government, have failed in their constitutional duty to prepare for the holding of elections by March 21, 2019.I have stated the facts conveyed in the press releases by the Private Sector Commission of January 31 and February 4, 2019. All, therefore, that the PSC has stated, is that the President and his Government must respect the Constitution and respect the law and that GECOM must observe, respect and act in accordance with the Constitution.Yours sincerely,Kit Nascimento
2. Steven Gerrard – Left in July 2015 for LA Galaxy – In his final two seasons at Liverpool, it was clear that Gerrards legs were beginning to go. However, why couldnt the legendary midfielder have seen out his career at Anfield? Its hard to imagine that Gerrard would have rejected the opportunity to extend his stay unless the club informed him that he no longer had a significant role to play. While his involvement on the field may have dwindled, his impact behind the scenes is what may be missed the most. 5 5 During Brendan Rodger’s Liverpool tenure, much emphasis was focused on the performances – or lack thereof – of the players signed by the Northern Irish manager, perhaps just as crucial in his disappointing reign are those that he let go.Of course we all remember Luis Suarez’s £75m to Barcelona, just two months after the Reds had almost completed a spectacular run to the Premier League title, but there are a significant number of others whose departure may have played a part in seeing the identity of the Merseyside club come into question.Take a look at five key players that Rodgers controversially agreed to either sell or not to hand a new contract to, by clicking the yellow arrow above, right.Did Brendan Rodgers deserve to be given the boot so soon into the new season? Who should replace him? Tell us your thoughts by leaving a comment below… 1. Raheem Sterling – Sold in July 2015 to Manchester City – After the controversy at the end of last season, Liverpool had few other options than to grant the unhappy winger his desired transfer. In receiving £49m for his signature, Liverpool arguably received far more than his worth. However, along with how poorly the money was spent, the concern is the message that it sends out to rival clubs. Having sold two key players over the past two summers in Suarez and Sterling, the Reds looked to have become a selling club under Rodgers. 5. Pepe Reina – Loaned to Napoli in 2013-14 season, sold in August 2014 to Bayern Munich – Reina spent eight years with Liverpool, but his treatment in his final two seasons with the club left a sour taste. Following confusion surrounding Reina replacing Victor Valdes at Barcelona, Liverpool prepared for life without the Spaniard by signing Simon Mignolet. After this never happened, the Reds decision to then send Reina on loan without telling the player himself was no way to treat the goalkeeper. A season later he joined Bayern Munich and this summer returned to Napoli. Reinas departure signalled a poor start to life on Merseyside for Rodgers. 5 5 3. Luis Suarez – Sold in July 2014 to FC Barcelona – After his tumultuous 2014 World Cup followed the Premier League title slipping out of Liverpools grasp, Suarez may have felt that he had little choice but to start afresh elsewhere. And with Barcelona offering £75m for his signature, FSG may have felt that taking the cash was the best move for the club. However, with the money having been poorly spent and Daniel Sturridge spending the next eight months out with an injury, selling Suarez was even more of a blow than expected. In selling the Uruguayan, Liverpool effectively ended any hopes of silverware in the new season. 5 4. Daniel Agger – Sold in August 2014 to Brondby IF – With YNWA tattooed on his knuckles, there are few other players from the modern Liverpool era that had as much affection for the club than Agger. Rodgers decision to sell, therefore, as Dejan Lovren, Mamadou Sakho and Kolo Toure moved ahead of him in the pecking order, was perhaps a poor decision. According to the player himself, Agger constantly argued with Rodgers and felt undervalued, leaving him with little choice but to seek an exit.