Aug 30, 2012 News
Govt. will have to agree on a nomination from Italy – Luncheon
Government has essentially refused to accredit Nigel Hughes as Honorary Italian Consul to Guyana, since his appointment as Chairman of the Alliance for Change (AFC). The position of Honorary Consul is a voluntary position for which there is no remuneration.
This disclosure was made at the Party’s weekly press conference at the Sidewalk Café on Middle Street yesterday.
According to the prominent attorney, Guyana’s Ambassador to Venezuela, Geoffrey Da Silva, earlier this week demanded of the Italian Ambassador to Venezuela that the Italian Government immediately remove him as Honorary Consul for Italy to Guyana.
He explained that Mr. Da Silva informed the Italian envoy that the Government of Guyana would not accredit or recognize Nigel Hughes as Honorary Italian Consul to Guyana since his appointment as Chairman of the AFC.
Mr. Hughes has been acting as Honorary Consul for Italy for in excess of eighteen months. The Government had persistently overlooked his accreditation.
On informing Mr. Hughes of the demand by the Government of Guyana, the Italian Government stated to the attorney that; “We have to thank you for the excellent work of your office and yours personally during this period.”
According to Hughes, “they don’t even have the pride in themselves to offer a credible excuse. This poor country will have a hard time surviving the next few years. They don’t realise that having quality people in these positions is to their advantage. They feel that they are denying you something when in fact you are the one who is giving at no cost but a big advantage to them.”
In citing what he described as a double standard, Hughes noted that Former Minister of Trade and Industry Maniram Persaud had continued to perform the services of Consul for the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago while serving as a Minister of the Government of Guyana. And as such, he saw no reason why an excuse should be made because he is the chairman of the AFC.
“The purpose of an honorary consul is basically to represent the interest of that nation here. I am in receipt of commendations from the Italian government about the performance of the office of the Italian consul over the last 18 months, and your position as a representative of a political party does not impact on your position on the interest of those foreign nationals,” Hughes underscored.
He said the issue is in the interest of the Italian government which he represents, and he does not want the situation to become a distraction from the Italian government investing in Guyana and representing their citizens.
Hughes continued: “I won’t want to put Italian citizens at a disadvantage because the government has a problem with me. In terms of having a Master’s and being at the bar for awhile, that should be taken into account. But that has clearly escaped the efforts of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs…Mr Abdool who is Honorary Consul for Finland applied at the same time I did 18 months ago to become honorary representative and his application was approved in six weeks, and mine of course, has been rejected. Clearly you have to be a Prashad or an Abdool to represent a foreign government.”
Head of the Presidential Secretariat, Dr. Roger Luncheon, during a post Cabinet Press briefing at Office of the President yesterday said the Italian Government does not have an honorary consul in Guyana, and until the Government of Guyana “appoints or agrees” to a nomination from the Government of Italy, then an appointment of an honorary consul is not possible.
“The convention is there has to be an agreement between the sending state (Italy) and the receiving state (Guyana) …Mr Hughes is questioning why he is not being appointed, the withdrawal may have to be provided by Italy, because Italy is the one who makes the decision in submitting the names and if acceptable it legally makes the appointment.” Luncheon noted.
Everything that comes out of Jagdeo’s mouth is aimed at confusing this nation.
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