Constitutional Reform Commission to have first meeting on Tuesday

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana
Members of the Constitutional Reform Commission pose for a photo with President Dr Irfaan Ali and other officials

Just over three months after that body was established by President Dr Irfaan Ali, the Constitutional Reform Commission (CRC) is finally set to have its first meeting in the new week.

In a post on his Facebook page, Attorney General and Legal Affairs Minister Anil Nandlall, S.C., disclosed that he has been invited by the Chairman of the Commission, Justice Carl Singh, to attend the CRC’s first meeting on Tuesday, July 9, at the Commission’s Middle Street, Georgetown office.

The 21-member Commission is tasked with reviewing the Constitution of Guyana and holding widespread stakeholder consultations on areas to be reformed.

The 2022 Constitutional Reform Commission Act has outlined several areas for potential reform, including Indigenous peoples’ rights, fundamental rights, children’s rights, eradication of discrimination, enhancement of race relations, and electoral reform, among others.

While 18 of the 21 members were initially sworn in by President Ali on April 3, the remaining members did not take their Oaths before the Head of State until May 28.

This was among the factors that prevented the Commission from holding its first meeting.Another major issue was the state of readiness of the building that would house the Commission.

However, AG Nandlall, who is one of the 21 members that constitute the Commission – representing the ruling People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C), earlier this week said those issues have since been resolved.

“The site of the Commission is ready. Some minor adjustments had to have been completed in the building where the Commission will conduct its business, and those works have been completed,” the minister explained.

In addition to Nandlall, the other PPP/C representatives on the Commission are: Ministers Gail Teixeira, Dr Frank Anthony, Pauline Sukhai, and Kwame McCoy.

The A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) parliamentary Opposition is represented by Vincent Alexander, Sherwood Lowe, Ganesh Mahipal, and Nigel Hughes. The other political appointee is Timothy Jonas, who is the representative of the joinder parties that hold an Opposition seat in the National Assembly.

Labour Movement Representative Aslim Singh, National Toshaos Council Representative Derrick John, Private Sector Representative Ramesh Persaud, Women’s Representative Kim Kyte-Thomas, Youth Representative Dr Josh Kanhai, Muslim Representative Imran Ally, Hindu Representative Radha Krishna Sharma, and Farmers’ Representative Adrian Anamayah are the other members sworn-in by the President.

The other CRC members are the Guyana Bar Association Representative, Kamal Ramkarran; and Christian Representative Keoma Griffith.

Constitutional reform was promised in the PPP/C 2020 Manifesto, where it was further outlined that consultation with the populace and important stakeholders and a broad-based Constitutional Reform Commission would drive the process.