Eight Opposition Members were referred to the Parliamentary Committee of Privileges for their conduct during the December 29, 2021, sitting of the National Assembly.
Government Chief Whip Gail Teixeira on Monday tabled a motion in the National Assembly which received the support of the Speaker Manzoor Nadir to send Opposition Members Annette Ferguson, Christopher Jones, Ganesh Mahipaul, Sherod Duncan, Natasha Singh-Lewis, Vinceroy Jordan, Tabitha Sarabo-Halley, and Maureen Philadelphia, to the Committee.
“Be it resolved that this National Assembly expresses the unwavering abhorrence of such gross disorderly conduct, contempt and breaches of privilege which took place on December 29, 2021,” she said in the motion.
Teixeira referred to efforts to steal the symbolic Parliamentary mace, damage to equipment of the Arthur Chung Convention Center, assault of a Parliamentary staff and disregard for the speaker and the authority of the assembly, noting that the actions “require stern measures.”
In an effort to stop the second and third reading of the Natural Resources Fund Bill on December 29, 2021, Opposition Members disrupted the sitting turning the house into an environment of total chaos.
“This is recorded evidence that cannot be erased or forgotten ,” Teixeira noted.
The occurrences were streamed live on the Parliament of Guyana’s pages as well as media outlets and others in the Assembly at the time.
The Government Chief Whip said “the named members brought the image of the National Assembly of Guyana into disrepute at a level never witnessed in this house before and such a shameful example by elected representatives, the public and particularly the younger generation, be it resolved that this National Assembly expresses the unwavering abhorrence of such gross disorderly conduct, contempt and breaches of privilege.”
She noted that the named Members of Parliament “themselves in a grossly disorderly, contumacious and disrespectful manner.”
Pointing to the seriousness of the matter, Teixeira asked that the Committee deliberate and report on the matter within a month.
Opposition Chief Whip Christopher Jones also submitted a privileges motion against Government Members of Parliament but according to the Speaker, the document was submitted on a letterhead titled “Leader of the Opposition press release.”
As such, it was resubmitted and will be reviewed “expeditiously,” before tabled in the house.