Leader of the Alliance For Change (AFC), Khemraj Ramjattan, categorically stated yesterday that regardless of any goodies that might be “beautifully” crafted into the 2015 budget, his party’s support will be unequivocally withheld.
The AFC parliamentarian made this assertion during his party’s press conference which was held at the Georgetown Club.
While President Donald Ramotar suspended the Parliament on November 10, a move that could possibly last some six months, the Constitution stipulates that before the end of the first four months of the fiscal year, the annual budget must be laid. Taking this into account, the President would possibly reconvene parliament before the end of the period.
However, once government reconvenes the National Assembly, to lay the 2015 budget, the Alliance For Change has made it clear that it will not support the budget, but will re-table the no-confidence motion, with government eventually being left with no other option but to hold national elections.
AFC member, Dominic Gaskin explained to media operatives that the Constitution does not provide measures to deal with finances in a prorogued Parliament. He said that it only explains how expenditure should be handled in light of a dissolved parliament.
He said that at this point, the government can spend only what has been appropriated for in the 2014 budget. But after the end of April 2015, there is no provision that allows for legal spending unless the budget is approved.
Ramjattan said that he has absolutely no confidence in the government and attention must be paid to the fact that the political opposition for three consecutive years was never consulted on the budget.
“No exception will be made this time, regardless of the goodies; 100 percent increase in salaries, poke-barrel contracts, we will not be supporting it. No way,” Ramjattan stated.
He believes, however, that the government will try to manipulate its non-support for the 2015 budget.
“They will bring a lot of goodies and then when we refuse to support it, they will go and say ‘look Ramjattan and dem boys block it, and so you got to vote back fuh we’. But the people are not fools. They know exactly what is taking place with this government,” the AFC leader concluded.
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