One day after it was revealed that former US President Jimmy Carter intervened to get the Government and the Opposition back at the table to restart discussions on national issues, the Minister of State is assuring that the agenda will be set by the two local leaders.
At his post-cabinet press conference today, Mr. Harmon said that while outside influences may offer suggestions, it will be up to the President and the Opposition Leader to decide on the issues they will discuss.
He reminded that both the President and the Opposition Leader are national leaders and therefore they would have a grasp on the national issues. He brushed aside suggestions that the agenda might be set by the former US President.
Mr. Carter contacted the President and the Opposition Leader last week and got them both to recommit to a restart of the regular engagements.
The engagements were halted a few months back with the Opposition raising concern about the Prime Minister leading the government side and whether he would be able to make concrete decisions on behalf of the government.
President David Granger has now indicated that he will lead the talks and wants to first address issues related to crime and national security, the environment and the oil and gas sector.
The Opposition Leader has indicated that he will consult with his party’s leadership about the President’s proposed agenda and then a decision will be made on the way forward.