The suspension of Members of Parliament (MPs) can affect parties in the National Assembly from representing their constituents. But to use that fact as the foundation to stage a boycott is nonsensical, says Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Anil Nandlall.
The senior politician’s comment came a day after the 49th Sitting of the National Assembly, which saw nonattendance from the A Partnership for National Unity + Alliance for Change (APNU+AFC), even as the government moved to acquire $44B in supplemental funds from the nation’s purse. The APNU+AFC was not present to scrutinize this request. The party’s absence is a reaction to the recent suspension of eight of its MPs for disorderly conduct during the passage of the Natural Resources Fund (NRF) back in December 2021.
While is it true that the suspension of MPs will render some sections of society mute, Nandlall was quick to point out that action taken by the Privileges Committee was warranted given the “gross misconduct” committed by the opposition MPs who sought on the night of December 29, to disrupt the sitting by blowing whistles and attempting to remove the symbolic mace.
“These suspensions did not fall from the sky,” Nandlall said while noting that disciplinary actions exist for such instances of “chaos”.
The AG said that he expected the rest of the Coalition MPs would have “tried harder” to make up for their colleagues’ suspension by showing up to the Sitting last Monday to scrutinise the government’s request. Instead, he said that government MPs had to grill their own colleagues so that critical information could reach Guyanese.