Granger fires back at rival Greenidge
The Peoples National Congress Reform (PNCR) is gearing to host is 17th Biennial Congress is a matter of days and already the battle lines have been drawn deeply and the two major competitors for the post of leader of the party identified.
Carl Greenidge, the PNCR’s former Finance Minister has thrown some political jabs at his Parliamentary Opposition senior, Brigadier (rtd) David Granger saying that Granger cannot effectively deal with all that the demands of heading A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) and the PNCR require.
Granger has since fired back calling the consolidation of the roles of PNCR Leader as well APNU leader and Chairman of the coalition a most, “desirable” one.
Granger this past week held a press engagement to mark APNU’s one year milestone of the coalition, when he was grilled over the debates surrounding the upcoming PNCR’s Congress and the post he looks to contest.
Granger told journalists that “I feel it’s desirable because it’s the combination of three important functions in terms of advancing the agenda of APNU and the Opposition.”
Granger reminded that currently, through this Office as Leader of the Parliamentary Opposition, “we meet here every month as a parliamentary group and that is part of the function of the partnership.”
He was referring to the Hadfield Street Office of the Leader of the Parliamentary Opposition and in his bid to explain the complementary roles, reminded that “We also meet as the Executive council of the APNU.”
The Brigadier (rtd) used the opportunity to remind also that, “I am appointed to the position of Leader of the Opposition, that is a Constitutional position and it is my view that the role of the PNCR inside APNU is an important one and the coordination of all three positions will advance the work of the partnership.”
He was adamant that he doesn’t see a conflict; I see that the three roles are complementary.”
Granger drew reference to the primaries, and said that when he was elected Presidential Candidate of the PNCR, his name was submitted also to lead the Coalition as its Presidential Candidate “and I was so elected.…I see no conflict, I see that they are complementary.”
According to Granger, as far as the parties in the opposition are concerned, there is what they have established called the ‘Shadow Cabinet.’
“We have what is called a Shadow Cabinet and several persons constitute that Shadow Cabinet, so it is not a one man show.”
The coalition leader, who is also vying for the post of the leader of the PNCR reminds that under the APNU banner “I have 10 Shadow Ministers and they all have responsibility…the partnership has 26 members and all of them have responsibilities both in terms of portfolios and geographical areas…I am not running a show by myself.”
Carl Greenidge had argued that he is in no way questioning the ability of Granger to lead the coalition in Parliament, but insisted that it would be “too much on his plate,” to also assume the leadership role of the PNCR also.
Greenidge argues that the PNCR requires radical advances unique to the party and Granger simply would not be able to deliver.
According to Granger however, when it comes to leading the partnership, “I depend on technical support, on advice, administrative support from my colleagues in the partnership.”
The coalition leader argues that within the PNCR this will be no different.
He says that within the PNCR’s structure there are institutions as Leader of that Party it still would not be a one man show.
This will also happen in PNCR, said Granger who was adamant that” I will work with
Granger reminded that within the PNCR’s structure “we have congress which is the supreme authority,” for the internal arrangements of the party.
He drew reference also to the fact that at the Congress such as the one that will be held from July 26 to July 29, delegates from all over the country will converge at the party’s headquarters at Congress Place “and they express their views and take decisions.”
He spoke too of the fact that the PNCR also boasts a General Council which “meets between congresses and people are very vocal.”
Granger spoke too of the fact that within the PNCR’s internal structure “we have a Central Executive and we have a Constitution which people respect.”
He insisted that “there are systems and institutions which function” within the party.
The Opposition Leader, who from all appearances seems intent on securing the leadership post of the PNCR, says that, “As far as I am concerned the system has been working…The PNCR is 55 years old this year, our institutions do work and people respect those institutions.”
Volda Lawrence is the lone female given the nod of approval from the various party groups when nominations closed recently.
Robert Corbin currently still holds the post of Leader of the PNCR but he has already indicated an unwillingness to continue at the helm of the party.
Corbin says that he will be contesting a post on the Central Executive of the party. Both Greenidge and Granger have competed against each other in recent months.
Granger won that race and this time around things have already begun to heat up, with Greenidge receiving strong support from PNCR big wigs such as Aubrey Norton.
Norton had served as a Member in the House in the 9th Parliament but did not make the cut among the APNU Parliamentarians despite playing a pivotal role in securing votes in Linden.