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Citizens were earlier today protesting in front of the Office of the President, Vlissengen Road, demanding Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo step down from public office. The protest included leaders from the main Opposition, A Partnership For National Unity + Alliance for Change (APNU+AFC).
The protest, which was on its second day, saw Vinceroy Jordan, People’s National Congress Reform (PNCR) Vice Chairman and APNU Member of Parliament (MP) calling for the Vice President (VP) to go. “He has been fingered in a level of corruption and it is up to the government now to let him go and ensure that there is proper investigation,” said Jordan.
At the same time Jordan is calling for an international credible investigation to be conducted and said that in order for this to be done Jagdeo must be relieved of his official duties or President Irfaan Ali must ensure he resigns.
- Tabitha Sarabo-Halley, also part of the protest, too called for the VP to go. She said an allegation is enough to have him removed from office to facilitate an investigation, and his continuity in office is bad for business, good governance, and Guyana’s image in the international community. Forcefully articulating her points of view, Sarabo-Halley said Guyanese do not want to associate with a corrupt government, and in light of the allegations against the VP an investigation is necessary, and let the chips fall where they may.
“The people have the power to decide and Guyanese should not sit down and let allegations of corruption, made against the VP on the awarding of contracts, pass, ” she said. Enough is enough; either we want a corrupt country or not, and Guyanese can’t have it both ways, said Sarabo-Halley.
Last Sunday, US-based VICE News aired, on Showtime Channel, an explosive report about corruption in Guyana. In that report, titled ‘Guyana For Sale,’ filed by investigative journalist, Isobel Yeung, allegations were made that the VP is involved in taking bribes for the awarding of state contracts and using Chinese businessman Su Zhirong as his middleman. In said report, Zhirong was seen being interviewed, flaunting his access to the Vice President, and the lucrative assets and contracts he has been awarded.
Since the exposé, whilst Su has not publicly made a statement and the President is still to respond to calls for the VP to step down, the VP has threatened to sue Su and said he wanted Su removed forthwith from the property he (Jagdeo) rented him.
The group said the protest, in front of the Office of the President, will be held every day and they will assemble again tomorrow at 9:00 a.m. They have encouraged others to join them.