General Secretary of the People’s Progressive Party and Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo has declared that he will be working “harder now” to ensure the PPP wins the next elections, in wake of the decision by the Caribbean Court of Justice to uphold the Presidential term limits to Guyana’s Constitution.
At an afternoon press conference, Mr. Jagdeo said he wants his supporters to know that he will still continue playing a major role in the party.
“While many in the PPP’s base will be disappointed, particularly those who have been pushing me, saying you have to do it, I want to assure them as I did long before the decision came, that came out with this particular outcome, but frankly speaking, given what the Government has been saying, I expected this outcome. And so I made it clear many times to you that we will never put all the PPP’s eggs in one basket”.
He said although his supporters might be disappointed, they need to remember that the PPP “has an election to win and I will work harder now to do so”.
According to Jagdeo, the PPP still has to make a decision on who will be its Presidential Candidate at the next election, but he assures that he will continue to be with the party in an integral way as its General Secretary.
“I want to be part of the transformation of the party and I want to have a say of what we will do in the next government.”
Mr. Jagdeo said the party has to create space for more younger persons in the party and there is a need for persons to shift down in the party and make way for younger persons.
Although Jagdeo has repeatedly denied that he was the architect of the move to challenge the Presidential term limit, political watchers are convinced that he was indeed the person behind the scene pushing the case since he wanted to run again for the Presidency.
Jagdeo became President in 1999 following the resignation of Janet Jagan. The Presidential term limit was added to the Constitution under his watch. He was elected to the Presidency in 2001 and in 2006.
The PPP won the elections again in 2011 with Donald Ramotar at its helm, although it lost control of the National Assembly to the joint opposition parties. With an Opposition controlled Parliament in place, Ramotar called early elections and lost. Just before those elections were called however, the challenge to the Presidential term limit, found its way in the local courts.