Eustace – Government should follow procedures
June 10, 2011
Eustace – Government should follow procedures

President of the New Democratic Party (NDP) and Leader of the Opposition Arnhim Eustace, in a 50-minute press conference on Wednesday, addressed the media on matters relating to Parliament and the Economy.{{more}}

Highlighted among the concerns, was a letter Eustace said he received from the Clerk of the House of Assembly, inviting a member of the Opposition to join the Select Committee, which has been set up to review sections of the Representation of the People Act.

In his response to the Clerk, Eustace said that the government should follow the procedure of notifying parliament that they have changed the objectives for which the Select Committee was set up, after which, the situation could be looked at afresh.

“The Parliamentary Opposition reiterates its position not to participate in any Select Committee that considers the Repeal of Sections 51(3) and 51(4) of the RPA.”

“However, we are not aware of any Bill being brought to parliament to revise the RPA and accordingly, unless we are apprised of the content of the Bill to revise the RPA, we are of the view that the Bill to Repeal Section 51 (30 and 51 (4) still stands.”

“We are committed to the principle that sections 51(3) and 51(4) should not be repealed. We however, may be prepared to consider other substantial amendments to the RPA when a Bill in that regard has been presented to the House of Parliament.”

Eustace also indicated to the media that he would be recording his response to comments made by former prime minister Sir James Mitchell, and that his response would be aired later this week.

“I am having another program, and I will deal with those areas of Sir James’s presentation which I think I should deal with.”

Eustace indicated that the ‘other program’ would be in the form of an interview with Jerry George, who had interviewed Sir James, in a programme which was broadcast on May 29.

In that interview, Sir James made a number of remarks aimed at Eustace; to which the general public have been anticipating a response from the East Kingstown Parliamentary representative.

When asked by the media why he opted not to speak to members of the media who had gathered at his office on Wednesday, the Opposition leader told the press that they only had a few days to wait.

“I’ll choose my time. Mr. Mitchell chose his time; I’ll choose mine.”