Controversy now surrounds the passage of the Natural Resources Bill after an Opposition Members of Parliament (MP) forcibly removed the Mace during a sitting of the National Assembly yesterday.

The Mace is deemed the most significant symbol in the National Assembly. It represents the authority of Parliament. No Mace means no business, Harmon contends but raised no objection surrounding his colleague MP removing the symbol. The former government minister has maintained that the action was appropriate to “halt” the passage of the bill.

This morning, House Speaker Manzoor Nadir assured that the bill was passed legally. He said while the original Mace was “violently removed”, a “replica mace” was subsequently placed. He said the second mace was set aside in case the original one could not be found.

But an adamant Harmon told the nation a few minutes ago, that the Speaker’s statement that Guyana has two Maces is “appalling and simply

“The replica referred to by the Speaker is a miniature Mace which was made for the hosting of Guyana’s National Youth Parliament and holds no authority in the sitting of the National Assembly. Further, there is no rule that provides for the use of a replica Mace in the National Assembly as being touted by the Speaker.”

Harmon continued, “the speaker cannot simply decide to pick up something and replace the official Mace of the National Assembly when the rules clearly state that if the Mace is not in the house absolutely no business can be done, again I say there is no provision for use of a replica or substitute Mace.”

The speaker has warned that actions will be taken against those responsible for removing the Mace.


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