The Government of Guyana used its majority in the National Assembly yesterday to pass the Amendments to the Anti-money Laundering and Local Government Bills but decided to postpone the presentation and passage of the Terrorism Bill in wake of calls from the Opposition and civil society groups for the Bill not to be rushed through the Parliament.
Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo told the National Assembly that “we agree after listening, reading some of the positions taken that more time is needed for civil organisations to study the Bill, so we on this side are prepared to oblige”.
The move was welcomed by the Opposition but the Opposition did not take part in the vote for the two Amendment Bills that were presented and passed.
Its members voiced their concern aggressively, accusing the government of being undemocratic by rushing the bills through the house.
Opposition Chief Whip, Gail Teixeira declared that, “This is a travesty, (as) Government cannot state what is the urgency in passing these Bills … We expect the Government will do as they like, you got the majority, so bulldoze it through Parliament in one Sitting.”
Government members dismissed the accusations and also denied reports that there was no consultation on the bills.
The administration is pushing for the various legislation to be put in place before the new year. Guyana will host local government elections in march next year.