…AFC says it is committed to coalition politics at national levelThe Alliance For Change (AFC) has announced that it would contest the Local Government Elections without being in coalition with A Partnership For National Unity (APNU), but the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) has described this AFC move as deceitful and unscrupulous politics.Subsequent to the AFC announcement, the PPP, in a release, stated that since the AFC’s coalition with the APNU in 2015, the AFC has adopted inconsistent, flip-flopping and deceptive political postures as it struggles to survive as a relevant political force.“We have seen how it flip-flopped on many issues in the past, including the parking meter contract, VAT on education, the sugar industry; and even before they entered into the coalition, Khemraj Ramjattan is on public record saying that the AFC will never enter into a coalition with the APNU/PNC, because if it does so, it will be “dead meat”, the PPP posited.The PPP added that the AFC has consistently taken public positions on issues as it attempts to fool the populace, but its intention is only to strengthen its negotiation leverage with APNU.The PPP is of the belief that the AFC’s announcement that it would contest the upcoming Local Government Elections separate from APNU is part of a ploy.“Again, the intent can be gleaned from its public statement in which it indicated that it will not contest in all of the Local Authority areas. The trickery is that (the AFC) will come into certain PPP strongholds in which APNU will not contest, as a Trojan horse, pretending to be independent of the APNU in order to garner some sympathy votes in these areas”, the PPP added.“If they think they can pull off such clumsy stunts, (it) is illustrative of the lack of respect which they have for the intelligence of the Guyanese electorate”, the PPP said.The Opposition party has called upon every single Guyanese not to allow themselves to be used by this moribund cabal of untrustworthy politicians who are grasping at the last straw for their survival.The AFC announcement of this important decision was made on Sunday via a statement to the media. According to the minority party in the coalition Government, “This decision was reached following the inconclusive negotiations with APNU.”Efforts to contact the Chairman of the APNU, Basil Williams, for a comment on Sunday proved futile. However, the General Secretary of the People’s National Congress (PNC), the leading party in the five-member APNU coalition, Amna Ally, told the Guyana Times that she found out about AFC’s decision in a newscast.Meanwhile, the AFC said this separation applies only for the 2018 Local Government polls, and “does not, in any way, affect the APNU+AFC Coalition Government, nor does it, in any way, change the AFC’s position on coalition politics at the national level. The AFC remains, and reaffirms that it is, committed to the APNU+AFC Coalition.”Following its decision, the party’s Management Committee has since resolved into the LGE Campaign Committee and is chaired by Executive Member David Patterson, who has been appointed Campaign Director. Additionally, Juretha Fernandes has been appointed Deputy Campaign Director, while appointments to other positions will be done subsequently.“The AFC is in full preparation mode for LGE, including hosting meetings in the various constituencies and identifying potential candidates who will be subject to a rigorous internal vetting process before official appointment. Candidates will be addressing the local issues which are of concern to citizens, and working collaboratively to find practical and implementable solutions,” Sunday’s missive stated.It further outlined that the AFC will soon determine which municipalities and constituencies it would strategically contest, as it does not envision contesting in each Neighbourhood Democratic Council and in every constituency of all municipalities, until subsequent election cycles.“The AFC is confident in the support it will continue to receive from the people of Guyana, and can assure citizens that it will only nominate candidates of the highest calibre and quality,” the party noted.On February 14 last, the APNU and AFC celebrated their 3rd year anniversary since signing the “lovers’ deal”.However, the AFC of recent has come under fire for the submissive role it has been playing since joining forces with the APNU. In fact, the top leadership of the AFC had decided back mid-November to revise its governing agreement with its majority coalition partner.The Cummingsburg Accord has a lifespan of a minimum of three years and maximum of five years, and was focused primarily on the General and Regional Elections.To this end, the AFC had proposed as part of the nine points up for negotiation with its coalition partner that an agreement on LGE be crafted. In fact, the minority coalition partner detailed some of its positions for negotiation in the LGE Accord. The AFC’s NEC, after a May 1 meeting, had allowed additional time for the two coalition partners to have a definitive written agreement in the form of a Local Government Elections Accord.