A breakdown in communication might have led to the A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) breaching an agreement with its coalition partner, the Alliance for Change (AFC), when it grabbed the top positions in two of the three Regional Democratic Council (RDCs) that the Coalition had dominion over.
The coalition, coming out of the March 2020 General and Regional Elections, had won three electoral districts. It was agreed that the RDC Chairmanship in atleast two of the regions – Regions Four and 10 – would go to an APNU Councillor, while the Vice Chair positions would go to an AFC representative.
However, during the election, the APNU councillors voted for their own, thereby breaching the inter-party agreement.
This led to the AFC General Secretary, David Patterson resigning and threatening to pull out of the National Assembly.
Opposition Leader, Joseph Harmon said today that an investigation has been launched into the matter.
That probe is still ongoing, and once complete, the APNU Chairman and AFC Leader will meet and discuss remedies.
He added that in political life, there are sometimes bumps; ups and downs,”but the importance is that as a coalition, our parties are better together and we subscribe to certain principles that see the need for us uniting as a country”.
The leader said that the APNU is still committed to inclusive governance and the weeding out of “one-party” rule.
Asked if the agreement was made privy to the councillors who cast their votes to elect top RDC positions, Harmon responded: “the agreements was [sic] between the APNU and AFC, and that the requirement of the communication of that agreement to the ground, was the responsibility of the elements in that agreement.”
He expounded, “So, it was infact a requirement that Councillors on the ground be advised about this agreement. My understanding is that there might have been some breakdown in communication, but that is a matter which has to be investigated.”
The “point person ” for the transmission of that information to APNU Councillors was People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) Executive Member, Aubrey Norton, Harmon noted.
Pressed whether there will be a reversal of the appointments, Harmon could not say. He reiterated that the matter will be deliberated upon between APNU and AFC leaders.
On the issue of Patterson’s resignation as Coalition Member of Parliament, Harmon said that he has received no formal indication from the AFC Executive Member.
He said that Patterson is still very active in the Coalition, but expressed worry in him leaving the AFC; nothing that it would be a loss for the party.