– AFC distances itself
Former executive and founding member of the Alliance For Change (AFC) Gaumattie Singh says that following her public announcement endorsing the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C), her life is being threatened.
She is now preparing to complain to the police.
Following a press conference yesterday, in which Singh made the claims, the AFC in condemning the attack wondered whether she is not being used as a pawn to discredit her former party.
On Saturday, at a PPP/C public meeting in East Berbice, Singh announced that she was backing Presidential Candidate Donald Ramotar.
During the press conference at Freedom House, PPP’s headquarters on Robb Street, Singh said her announcement at Port Mourant, Berbice, on Saturday was only known to “a few top ones within the party” and was a secret.
However, almost immediately upon her announcement, her office and home phones were bombarded by calls from unknown numbers, threatening her life and accusing her of crossing the floor.
According to AFC yesterday, it “categorically condemns the use of any threatening conduct against Mrs. Singh, or any other candidate of any political party involved in the important work of winning support for their respective parties. Our own activists and candidates face daily threats and harassment from persons purporting to be acting on behalf of the PPP/C.”
The AFC made it clear that Singh had provided dedicated service to the party with no ill-will held towards her.
“In fact, Ms. Singh, following the dastardly attack suffered several years ago, received full support from the Presidential Candidate, Mr. Khemraj Ramjattan, and others. The AFC however respects her democratic right to associate with the political party of her choice. We cannot help but wonder whether Ms. Singh is being unwittingly used as a pawn by her PPP/C comrades to suggest that the AFC would want to physically harm her in some way. Our deep respect and appreciation for her would not allow for such a thing.”
The AFC noted that when one contemplates the “small number of charlatans” recently joining the PPP’s platform, Singh will definitely stand out as an asset.
However, the former AFC executive had different thoughts to the media yesterday.
Stressing that she had been promised nothing by the PPP/C but had admiration for Ramotar after attending UG with him, the lawyer felt that in Guyana, once persons stand up and speak out, they will be targeted.
Singh, who was hospitalised in May 2008 after an assailant threw acid on her, badly disfiguring her face, made it clear she is not afraid to face the threats.
Speaking out on her parting from AFC, Singh claimed that last year she received a call from the AFC’s Presidential Candidate, Khemraj Ramjattan, offering to avail the services of a US doctor. However, Singh opined that Ramjattan’s call had to do with the rotation of the Presidential Candidate position between Ramjattan and Raphael Trotman, the current AFC Prime Ministerial candidate. She believed that the call was a self-serving one.
Also at the press conference yesterday was former senior official and Parliamentarian of the People’s National Congress, Joseph Hamilton.
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