In short order the Territory might have a new Leader of the Opposition as it was announced that At Large Representative, Hon. Ronnie Skelton who recently left Government to form his own political Party has expressed interest in becoming the new Leader of Opposition since he commands the support of two other members of the opposition.
The proposed transfer of the important position was mentioned by current Leader of the Opposition Hon. Andrew Fahie during a press conference held on 14 December.
In disclosing the matter to the media, Hon. Fahie said: “As we are all aware by now the Opposition has recently increased by number from two elected members to five elected members. The three newest Opposition members were part of the NDP government but are now part of the newly formed political party and they now command the majority in the Opposition.”
He stated that the Hon. Skelton’s party PVIM which currently has the Opposition majority in the House of Assembly has a right to the title, and he said that Hon. Skelton has already informed him of his plans to petition His Excellency Augustus Jaspert to make the change.
In disclosing the details of his conversation with Hon. Skelton Hon. Fahie said: “In the exercising of their constitutional rights under section 72A on Tuesday 11 December I was called to a meeting and informed by their new leader Hon. Ronnie Skelton that his political group has decided to write the Governor to revoke my position as Leader of the Opposition and have him Hon. Ronnie Skelton appointed as the new Leader of the Opposition.”
Section 72A states the Governor shall appoint as Leader of the Opposition a member of the House of Assembly recommended by a majority of the elected members of the House who are members of any opposition party whose numerical strength in the House is greater than that of any other opposition party.
Currently the Opposition comprises of the three PVIM member, one VIP member and Hon. Julian Fraser is said to be the leader of a new political organization.
Hon Fahie commented that “When the letter to rescind my appointment as Leader of the Opposition is received by the Governor I will graciously step aside and allow the wishes of the majority of the new opposition members to have their desire that is supported by law.”
As he now waits for word that he is no longer Leader of the Opposition Hon. Fahie said that he is still prepared to push forward with his present level or representation. In fact Hon . Fahie said that Opposition Leader or not he will still be asking questions in the House of Assembly
He however, questioned how able the new Opposition Leader would be at holding Government’s feet to the fire when he was just months ago a member of the Party.