Jagdeo’s pension plan ‘rattled my soul’ – Moses Nagamootoo
“To my utter shame and regret I voted for it, because I was required to do so as a PPP MP.”
The tension between the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) and its former Executive Member Moses Nagamootoo seems to be escalating, with barbs being flung back and forth.
Nagamootoo fired back at his critics during a recent Alliance For Change press briefing, but in sticking to his decorum said that he would not seek to link any specific leader in the party to a particular allegation he has made against them but rather, “all are involved, all are consumed.”
He had only minutes before told media operatives that the decision he made to leave the PPP/C was one that did not happen overnight, and commenting on one of the issues that has been making its rounds in the campaign, Nagamootoo said that President Jagdeo’s pension plan had rattled his soul when he first addressed his mind to it.
Nagamootoo sought to express his position further when he said “but to my utter shame and regret I voted for it, because I was required to do so as a PPP MP.”
He said that when he forged an allegiance with the AFC he was exercising, as an independent citizen, his constitutional and democratic right to choose with whom to associate.
“I had wanted to leave the PPP since 1998, when the process to destroy the party’s internal democracy had started. I didn’t do so then…I again wanted to resign between 2004 and 2006 when the leadership refused to investigate many of my complaints, including allegations of corruption, fraud at the Wildlife Department, illegal export of bottle-nose dolphins, phantom squad,” charged Nagamootoo.
“I became totally disgusted at the shameful greed of some of the leaders, who turned the state into a real estate agency and were helping themselves and their friends to prime properties, and were interested in globe-trotting and extravagance, whilst sugar workers, public servants and old people were living on starvation wages and pensions.”
To this end Nagamootoo said “One example suffices here…When I first saw the proposal, I had said that the “president’s pension plan” – in excess of thirty-six million dollars ( $36,000,000) annually – rattled my soul, but to my utter shame and regret I voted for it, because I was required to do so as a PPP MP.”
Office of the President had refuted claims by the AFC that the president’s pension plan amounts to roughly $3M monthly, but they have argued that if OP denies this position then it should present its calculations.
Nagamootoo also told media operatives that he had indicated that they (PPP members) were moving away from Cheddi Jagan and Ho Chi Ming’s principles of “revolutionary morality”, and that “we were becoming greedy and corrupt…No one in the leadership supported me.”
Nagamootoo says too that he had taken a stand on the issues before the scandal broke, and leaders’ names appeared in diplomatic cables to the United States Government on allegations of corruption and criminality.
“So, resigning from the PPP, was a burden that I have eventually shed, and I have felt relieved and at peace with myself since.”
The former PPP/C Executive member says that he has embraced the AFC with sincerety and passion.
“In it I have seen Guyana’s future…Here, in this AFC Family, are young leaders who have honest vision and serious ideas for Guyana’s development and progress.”