Prime Minister, Moses Nagamootoo has said the Caribbean Court of Justice’s (CCJ) ruling today upholding presidential term limits is a triumph for Guyanese and the constitution.
In an interview with the Department of Public Information (DPI), the Prime Minister who is acting in the capacity of President, said the ruling “gives validation of the belief of a large section of Guyanese people, that you should not have an abuse of office by those who feel that they own the seat of government and those who feel that the executive authority belongs to an individual. We cannot personalise authority, we cannot personalise power and governance. The people of Guyana have triumphed today.”
Prime Minister Nagamootoo said the constitution is the supreme law of the land and today the CCJ has held that to be the case and Guyana must now move on. “We must now put this issue that I have considered to be a trifle behind us and look to the political arena to throw up leaders of credibility, of merit, and those who have a desire to serve the country and not use power for self-interest.”
In explaining what the CCJ decision means for the people of Guyana, the Prime Minister said that Guyana’s Constitution should be respected since it is the instrument by which Guyanese should be guided. This, he said, means citizens should respect the efficiency and integrity of the judicial system and not ascribe motives of bias and racism in our local courts or at the Caribbean Court of Justice as well.
The Prime Minister further added, if the constitution says unequivocally there are now only two terms for a person wanting to be president, then that is the law. He reminded that the citizens of Guyana had consented to this amendment when they participated in the Constitutional Reform Process in 1996.
When the amendment was eventually taken to the National Assembly in 2000, both of the parties, the PPP and the PNC voted for the change, “voted for there to be only two terms for anyone who would contest to be president,” Prime Minister Nagamootoo said.
By: Gabreila Patram.
Image: Jameel Mohammed.