While the main Parliamentary Opposition preaches the importance of meaningful consultation, its Leader, Aubrey Norton, during a recent public engagement, refused to shake hands with the President, Dr Irfaan Ali. The state of affairs is “unbecoming” of an Opposition Leader and his justification is equally “nonsensical”. At least this is according to the Attorney General and Legal Affairs Minister, Anil Nandlall.

Norton later said he refused to shake hands with his “oppressors” before signalling his party’s intention to boycott the 49th Sitting of the National Assembly last Monday, even as the government sought to withdraw some $44 billion from the nation’s coffers.

“On the one hand, he claims he wants to work with the government and on the other hand, he doesn’t even want to extend a hand to shake the President’s hand. I don’t know how the President is expected to meaningfully consult with another human being who refuses to shake his hands,” Nandlall said during his recent “Issues in the News” programme.

The AG said that even worrying is “the type of behaviour that is coming from a gentleman, who under our constitutional structure, is in the position, unfortunately, as an alternative president”.

Nandlall said that even with the adversarial nature of Guyanese politics, he expected Norton’s behaviour to improve since settling in as Opposition Leader.

“If five months is not enough for him to acclimatise himself and behave accordingly to the office that he holds, then in my humble opinion, he’s not qualified to hold that office – he doesn’t have the temperament to hold that office,” the AG remarked.






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