After serving two terms as President, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo is not ruling out the possibility of a third term, which could be barred by the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ).
Jagdeo, who has said before that he was not interested in a third term presidency, could not say at a Monday afternoon press conference whether he was interested in running for the post at the 2020 General Elections.
When asked if he would run as a presidential candidate for the PPP if nominated, Jagdeo told reporters that “I like dealing with things that are topical. Right now, for me, who will be the presidential candidate for the PPP is not topical because we don’t have elections in the next three months.”
He went on to state that when that bridge is reached, it will be crossed and that members of the media will be the first to know when a decision is made in that regard.
“I promise you that we will cross that bridge when we come to it. The media will be the first to know once we make that decision” the Opposition Leader said.
Last month, when the former President was asked the same question, he told reporters that, “I don’t have to give yes or no answers; I just told you what is preoccupying my mind now. When that time comes, then you will hear from me whether I am interested or not.”
However, Mr. Jagdeo, who also serves as General Secretary of the PPP had said after he demitted office in 2011 that he was not interested in a third term and was not interested in elected office, yet he campaigned for the PPP and became the Opposition Leader, over Donald Ramotar, who was the Presidential Candidate.
In early 2015, before the PPP was unseated from executive office, Jagdeo had responded to a writ which was filed in the High Court challenging the two-term limit for the presidency in Guyana.
In his statement, which was read by then Cabinet Secretary, Dr. Roger Luncheon, Jagdeo had said that he remains “committed to not pursuing any further appointment to an elected constitutional office or post in Guyana.”
In a subsequent interview with the Stabroek News, Jagdeo confirmed that Dr. Luncheon was indeed speaking on his behalf.
Last month, Court of Appeal upheld a High Court ruling that it was unconstitutional to limit the number of times one seeks to be elected as President.
However, Attorney General (AG) and Minister of Legal Affairs, Senior Counsel Basil Williams, who was representing the state in the matter said that the decision which was handed down will be challenged in the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ).
Meanwhile, Jagdeo at his press conference said that at present, the PPP believes that its job is to support the government where it deserves support, and fight “aggressively” when they (the executive) are “taking away benefits from Guyanese.”