The Parliament Office has announced Friday, April 26th as the next sitting for the National Assembly, but it is not likely that funding for the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), critical to the holding of early polls, will be dealt with.
The Opposition has been saying that it will not be participating in the sittings, and will hold firm that it is focused on early elections.
According to the Order Paper released, April 26th will see the holding of the 113th sitting of the National Assembly. At the sitting, several reports being circulated.
The reports include the Women and Gender Equality Commission Report on “Achieve Gender Equality and Empower All Women and Girls”; Final Report into the Investigation of Employment Practices at the Guyana Elections Commission and the Appointment of Roxanne Myers to the Post of Deputy Chief Election Officer; Loan Contract No. 4698/BL-GY dated December 10, 2018 between the Co-operative Republic of Guyana and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) for an amount of US$11,640,000 to finance the Strengthening of the Energy Sector Program; the Annual Report of the National Insurance Scheme for the year 2016; The Petroleum (Exploration and Production) (Tax Laws) (Tullow Guyana B.V., Eco (Atlantic) Guyana Inc. and Total E&P Guyana BV) Order 2019 – No. 2 of 2019; and the Audited Financial Statements of the Institute of Applied Science and Technology for the year ended 31st December, 2014.
Also to be circulated will be Audited Financial Statements of the Cheddi Jagan International Airport Corporation for the year ended 31st December, 2016; the Annual Report of the Guyana Office for Investment (GO-Invest) for the year 2016; the Annual Report of the Guyana National Bureau of Standards for the years 2012 and 2013; the Annual Report of the Competition and Consumer Affairs Commission for the years 2012 and 2013; and the Annual Report of the Guyana National Printers Limited for the year 2015.
There will also be presentation of a number of important Bills. These include the Interception of Communications (Amendment) Bill 2019; the Procurement (Amendment) Bill 2019; the Custom and Trade Single Window System Building 2019; the Customs (Amendment of Schedule) Bill 2019; the National Accreditation Council (Amendment) Bill 2019, among other businesses to be conducted.
The request for more funds for general elections was expected to be tabled at a time when the Caribbean Court of Justice gets ready to hear appeals related to the no-confidence motion that was carried on December 21st, the last day that the National Assembly was held.
There were calls for early elections based on the constitution. Subsequent appeals to the courts have put paid to this. GECOM said it needs more than $3B to ready itself. GECOM also wants to carry out a house-to-house registration which could take several months.
Government officials had said that the request for additional funds has to follow a number of processes before it is approved by Cabinet and taken to the National Assembly for deliberations.
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