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Government legislators walk out during budget debate

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Opposition member Joanne Massiah

JOHN’S, Antigua, CMC – Government legislators walked out of the Parliament on Thursday during the budget presentation of opposition member Joanne Massiah claiming that she had shown disrespect to the legislature by being absent for most of the day.

“While we are in Parliament doing the nation’s business she was busy all day making her rounds in the media waging a campaign for her party’s leadership, then she wants us to sit and listen to her presentation.

“We will not put up with this nonsense and disregard for the importance of doing the people’s business,” said government MP Chet Greene.

Prime Minister Gaston Browne speaking in the House following the walk-out of his colleagues, said that the opposition legislator was irresponsible and her actions demonstrate that she does not recognize the seriousness associated with being paid by taxpayers money and therefore has a responsibility to be in parliament and to make her presentation.

Massiah is one of three candidates expected to contest the leadership of the main opposition United Progressive Party (UPP) that was booted out of power in the general elections last June.

In an exclusive interview with the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC) late last year, former prime minister and UPP leader, Baldwin Spencer confirmed he would step aside as leader of the party he’s headed for more than 20 years. He said he will serve out his term as the parliamentary representative for St John’s Rural West.

Massiah is likely to face a challenge for the post from former finance minister Harold Lovell and former culture minister Eleston “Namba” Adams.

She said the loss of the June 2014 elections has left a wounded party that is desirous of change.

Minister of Public Utilities, Aviation and Transportation, Robin Yearwood, defended the walk out saying “they (UPP government) left the nation in shambles and still they are not taking the business of the people seriously now that they are in opposition.

“We will not sit down and allow it because it is not business as usual.  We are committed to rebuilding this nation and we will not be distracted by their irresponsibility.  Every time they slip we will hold them accountable in the House,” he added.

 

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Untitled-2

Opposition member Joanne Massiah

JOHN’S, Antigua, CMC – Government legislators walked out of the Parliament on Thursday during the budget presentation of opposition member Joanne Massiah claiming that she had shown disrespect to the legislature by being absent for most of the day.

“While we are in Parliament doing the nation’s business she was busy all day making her rounds in the media waging a campaign for her party’s leadership, then she wants us to sit and listen to her presentation.

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“We will not put up with this nonsense and disregard for the importance of doing the people’s business,” said government MP Chet Greene.

Prime Minister Gaston Browne speaking in the House following the walk-out of his colleagues, said that the opposition legislator was irresponsible and her actions demonstrate that she does not recognize the seriousness associated with being paid by taxpayers money and therefore has a responsibility to be in parliament and to make her presentation.

Massiah is one of three candidates expected to contest the leadership of the main opposition United Progressive Party (UPP) that was booted out of power in the general elections last June.

In an exclusive interview with the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC) late last year, former prime minister and UPP leader, Baldwin Spencer confirmed he would step aside as leader of the party he’s headed for more than 20 years. He said he will serve out his term as the parliamentary representative for St John’s Rural West.

Massiah is likely to face a challenge for the post from former finance minister Harold Lovell and former culture minister Eleston “Namba” Adams.

She said the loss of the June 2014 elections has left a wounded party that is desirous of change.

Minister of Public Utilities, Aviation and Transportation, Robin Yearwood, defended the walk out saying “they (UPP government) left the nation in shambles and still they are not taking the business of the people seriously now that they are in opposition.

“We will not sit down and allow it because it is not business as usual.  We are committed to rebuilding this nation and we will not be distracted by their irresponsibility.  Every time they slip we will hold them accountable in the House,” he added.