A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) has rejected the Attorney General’s revised version of the Chief Parliamentary Council, Cecil Dhurjon’s submission.
Those submissions incorporate the changes APNU made to the Anti Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Bill (AML/CFT) that is currently with the Parliamentary Select Committee.
APNU’s Executive Member, Joseph Harmon, in a public missive, described as “obnoxious”, the position taken by the Attorney General Anil Nandlall to submit a revised version of APNU’s amendments that were completed by Dhurjon at the same time his (Dhurjon) amendments were submitted.
Cecil Dhurjon, Harmon said, did a good job of implementing APNU’s amendments. He said that the People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) will find the amendments uncomfortable because they fit in so nicely with the law.
“It’s basically going to be at variance with the public statements that have been made by the State, the President, the Minister of Legal Affairs, Attorney General, by the Ministers of Finance both junior and senior going around the country on these so called consultations.
“We are satisfied that the recommendations which we made for strengthening the AML architecture.”
It is against that backdrop that APNU rejected the revised version of Dhurjon’s work.
According to Harmon, “Mr. Nandlall has already submitted the revised version of the Chief Parliamentary Council’s work even before it came to the Select Committee and I had cause to remind the Attorney General that he sits in the Committee as a member of the Committee not as the Attorney General.
“Therefore he has no prior right to the work of the Chief Parliamentary Council.”
He said that the Chief Parliamentary Council’s office is located within the office of the Attorney General and comes under Dhurjon’s work the purview of the Attorney General himself.
Harmon contended, “Nandlall is to receive documents just as any member of the Committee and if he intends to make any recommendation it should be made then. The manner in which the government sought to submit to us, the Chief Parliamentary Council’s recommendations and revised version by the attorney General dated the same day we consider that to be obnoxious and out of hand in fact we haven’t considered his amendments.”
Harmon said that their recommendations were well made and well founded both in law and in reality “therefore we are basically saying now that the government has no further excuse to make for delaying what needs to be done, to have an Anti Money Laundering Bill passed in the National Assembly.”
According to Harmon, it is now time for President Donald Ramotar to engage with the opposition political parties and deal with the issues they have on the table.
“What we are looking forward to now is for President Ramotar, rather than going around the country, spending some time and energy talking to us of the issues that affect this nation.” Harmon said that this position is also shared by his colleagues form the Alliance for Change (AFC).
“We have made it very clear that we are reasonable people. We have put our demands there on the table and we expect that we would have some consultation with the government with respect to how we satisfy the requirements of all the parties.
“You can only achieve that by sitting together at a table not by shouting at each other at the television or at the convention centre, it’s not there; that is not the forum.”
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