President reshuffles Cabinet

first_img…Adams-Yearwood moved from Housing Ministry, Broomes from Natural Resources MinistryAs Government prepares to return to the National Assembly today, President David Granger has announced some major reshuffling of his Cabinet following the resignation of four Ministers who had dual citizenship status.This reshuffling is in accordance with recent rulings in the local courts that it is illegal for persons with dual citizenship status to be elected to sit in the National Assembly.To this end, Foreign Affairs Minister and Second Vice President, Carl Greenidge; Minister of State, Joseph Harmon; Public Service Minister, Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine, and Business Minister Dominic Gaskin were forced to tender their resignations.As a result of that development, President Granger, who has lauded the work of the four ministers during their time in office, on Thursday announced some reshuffling which has seen the transfer of some ministers and the appointment of new ones.These changes will see controversial ministers Valerie Adams-Yearwood and Simona Charles-Broomes being removed from their previous ministries. Minister Adams-Yearwood has been replaced by Junior Minister Annette Ferguson, who has been removed from the Public Infrastructure Ministry and placed at the Communities Ministry as Housing Minister.Adams-Yearwood is now a Junior Minister within the Agriculture Ministry, with responsibility for Rural Affairs.She had previously come under scrutiny as Housing Minister after it was recently revealed that her husband Godfrey Yearwood was awarded a contract to build homes for a project spearheaded by the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA), an agency which fell under her then Ministry.Meanwhile, Junior Minister Broomes has been removed from the Natural Resources Ministry and placed at the Ministry of the Presidency with responsibility for Youth Affairs. Her placement at the Natural Resources Ministry was said to be a conflict of interest situation after it was revealed that she had mining operations which she subsequently claimed were handed over to her children.More recently, this Minister had found herself in the limelight after she had become embroiled in an altercation with two security guards at a business establishment on the East Bank of Demerara.In addition, the Head of State has announced that Alliance For Change (AFC) Member of Parliament Haimraj Rajkumar will now be the Business Minister; Dawn Hastings-Williams the Minister of State in the Ministry of the Presidency; and Working People’s Alliance (WPA) Chairperson Tabitha Sarabo-Halley the Public Service Minister within the Ministry of the Presidency.There has been no mention of who will replace Greenidge as Foreign Affairs Minister.However, even as Government reshuffles its Cabinet for today’s parliamentary sitting, three MPs on the PPP Opposition’s side – Gail Teixeira, Adrian Anamayah and Odinga Lumumba – have already resigned from the National Assembly. They each have dual citizenship. Despite this, however, the Opposition is holding strong to its earlier position of not attending any National Assembly sessions until the hearing and determination of the appeals before the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) challenging a Court of Appeal ruling that INVALIDATED the passage of the no-confidence motion against the Coalition Government.Last month, the Appeal Court ruled, via a 2:1 majority, that the motion needed an absolute majority of 34 votes and not a simple 33 majority in order to be validly passed. As such, the several appeals were filed to reverse the decision and reinforce a prior ruling by the High Court, which found that the motion was successfully passed. The Trinidad-based Regional Court will be hearing arguments on those appeals on May 9 and 10.Nevertheless, today’s recommencement of parliamentary sittings will see a host of items on the agenda coming up. One such item is the Petroleum Commission of Guyana Bill, but Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo has said that such key matters should not be dealt with when the no-confidence motion is still engaging the courts.“I do not think any sitting of the Parliament should address any of these major issues, especially before the CCJ rules definitively on these matters,” Jagdeo told reporters at his weekly press conference on Thursday.last_img

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