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Postby duay7t15f » Fri Dec 08, 2017 7:18 pm

… does not affect Jagdeo’s pensionThe National Assembly last evening passed a Bill to slash benefits to former Presidents, but it is unlikely that President Donald Ramotar will put his signature to it and make it law.The government voted against the Bill, with Parliamentarians of the ruling PPP/C arguing that it strips former presidents of their dignity,Cheap Jerseys 2018, and that it was a vindictive act targeted at former President Bharrat Jagdeo.Jagdeo was the first to benefit from the handsome retirement package.The Bill passed yesterday does not affect in anyway, the pensions of any former president, which at current calculations add up to $1.2 million per month.The new Bill was designed to deal with benefits additional to the pension, or, the “perks” as Opposition Parliamentarian Moses Nagamootoo put it.The Bill is intended to repeal a 2009 Act which gives former presidents like Mr. Bharrat Jagdeo unlimited staff and resources. For example, the 2009 law only says former presidents are entitled to vehicles and staff, without specifying a number. The new Bill intends to make the benefits specific.The Opposition argued that the Bill was not vindictive, but that it was premised on “social justice.”Nagamootoo placed it in this context – “You cannot live in a donkey cart economy and want to live a life driving a Mercedes or a Cadillac.”The amended Bill limits a former President to two vehicles to be owned and maintained by the state, as opposed to the unlimited number allowed under the 2009 law.Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine of the opposition alliance, APNU, said that the Bill had to be seen in the context where the rich are being enriched and the poor are being starved.Nagamootoo said that dignity is weighed in quantum of money; it is also weighed on the basis of the multitude of sufferings. He said that the dignity of ordinary Guyanese is being stolen when money is being used to fatten the already well-endowed instead of giving more to pensioners and public sector workers, such as nurses, Policemen and teachers.Carl Greenidge,Cheap Basketball Jerseys, of APNU, said that the Bill was intended to correct “lawlessness and abuse of power.”Greenidge piloted the Bill and saw it through its eventual passage in the House. He said that it was intended to remedy the deficiencies in the old bill and was not meant to touch the pension of former presidents, which currently amounts to 7/8 of what a serving president collects.Greenidge said that the quantum of the pension is exceptionally generous, and would not have required supplementary benefits, but he said that since the benefits are already on the books, the opposition merely wanted to streamline these.He said that the 2009 law was badly drafted since it committed unlimited and uncapped facilities and services to former presidents.Minister of Housing and Water, Irfaan Ali,Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale, said that the Bill would serve to discourage others from pursuing the office. But Dr. Roopnaraine dismissed that assertion, saying that benefits should not be one of the reasons a young person aspires to serve the public.Ali said that it was utter disrespect and disregard for former presidents that the new Bill allots just $5,000 to cover water, electricity and telephone expenses.However, Dr. Roopnaraine said that looking at the benefits in full,ArDarius Stewart Jersey, the former President could use some of the money from his pension.Mr. Nagamootoo also dismissed Ali’s contention, saying that no one cries foul over the fact that Parliamentarians only receive $20 to cover their electricity, with no provision for their telephone or water bills.Ali was contending that the amount stipulated in the new Bill would mean that former presidents would only have “two light bulbs” and, as PPP/C Parliamentarian Bibi Shadick muttered from her seat, he would have to cook on “fireside.”Ali argued that the Bill also sought to muzzle the President, since it says that if he earns from work done, he would have to give up his benefits.Dr. Roopnaraine however rebutted that the provision was meant to ensure that former Presidents do not abuse the provisions for partisan political interest.The Housing Minister was up in arms about the fact that the Bill does not allow for medical care for children that might become dependent on the president, such as if he adopts, or if he marries a woman who already has children.The new Bill entitled a former President and his spouse and children to free medical attention and treatment or reimbursement of medical expenses incurred.The Bill says that the medical benefits would apply to “natural children” of the former presidents and spouse, below the age of 18 years. The new Bill puts a cap on that medical benefit for children to $200,000 annually.Dr. Roopnaraine said that the intention of the Bill was not to deprive any child,Cheap China Jerseys, and he suggested that that part of the Bill could be amended; but it was not amended.Regarding catering for children former presidents may have, Nagamootoo said it would be best to deal with the situation now and not look at “events unforeseen and events that may not mature.”Regarding security, the Housing Minister argued that the law should not dictate the level of security for the former president, since that is for the Police to decide. The new Bill limits former presidents to two security personnel.Dr. Roopnarine argued that the Bill has to be seen in the context where thousands are living futureless lives, with poverty spreading in all parts of the country,China Stitched NFL Jerseys, while a narrow circle of overnight millionaires are thriving.Nagamootoo stated that when the former president’s benefits are computed, it would amount to $3 million a month,cheap jerseys from china, and that sum was “objectionable” and a “shame.”Attorney General Mr. Anil Nandlall stated that since the 2009 Act was in place, Mr. Jagdeo is vested with the right to receive the benefits the law provides for, and the law could not be reversed.No one contested that fact.
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