….looks for PNC to transfer more power to themThe Working People’s Alliance (WPA), a member of the A Partnership for National Unity (APNU), has described the Cummingsburg Accord— the sweetheart deal which binds APNU and Alliance for Change (AFC) — as a “lopsided” agreement, since it benefitted some parties more than others.The WPA is one of five parties which came together in 2011 and formed A Partnership for National Unity.WPA Executive Member Dr David Hinds told media operatives on Friday that the agreement was clearly disproportional and they are hoping also to have the APNU’s charter reassessed.“Clearly, the last agreement created a sort of lopsided arrangement kind of within the coalition. We would hope that as they go into the second round of the Cummingsburg Accord and perhaps a reassessment of the APNU charter, because there is an APNU charter that binds the five parties together. We did not look at it in the 2015 elections,” he said.His remarks come on the heels of the Cummingsburg Accord being set to be reviewed in the near future. Hinds indicated that their supporters are of the opinion that the minority party in the coalition, the Alliance for Change (AFC) received more than what was deserving.“We feel that there should be much more participation by all parties within the coalition. Some of our supporters are saying that the AFC got more than they deserved in the last election and parties like the WPA got less than they deserved.We would imagine that when they sit down to iron those things out, they would come to some conclusion that would be fair to all the parties,” Hinds affirmed.The Cummingsburg Accord expires on February 14, 2020. However, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo had positioned last year that it was being undermined by the APNU/PNC. In fact, he mentioned moves made by President Granger to lessen the responsibility of AFC ministers.AFC Executive, Cathy Hughes, was first appointed as Tourism Minister in 2015 when the coalition Government first took office. Her stint as Tourism Minister was short-lived, and she was reassigned to a relatively unknown ministry which has fewer responsibilities – the Public Telecommunications Ministry. The Tourism Ministry was then assigned under another AFC executive and son-in-law of the President, Dominic Gaskin, who was in charge of the Business Ministry— a lesser known ministry also.Jagdeo had also highlighted that the move taken by President Granger to strip Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman of his responsibility for the oil and gas sector. Responsibility for the environment was first taken away from Trotman when a decision was made to establish the Department of Environment that is now housed in the Ministry of the Presidency.
OTTAWA — A federal trade tribunal is tossing out a challenge to the federal government’s handling of a high-stakes competition to design the navy’s new $60-billion fleet of warships.The Canadian International Trade Tribunal’s ruling removes one potential obstacle as Ottawa prepares to award a design contract for the warships to U.S.-based defence giant Lockheed Martin.The government and Irving Shipbuilding selected Lockheed’s proposed warship design in October over submissions from Alion Science and Technology of Virginia and Spanish firm Navantia.Alion subsequently filed complaints with the trade tribunal as well as the Federal Court, saying Lockheed’s design did not meet the navy’s requirements and should have been disqualified.But in a ruling issued on Thursday, the trade tribunal said neither Alion nor its Canadian subsidiary met the requirements to file a challenge and that it was dismissing the complaint.The government and Irving have been negotiating a final design contract with Lockheed for several months, which officials hope to complete in weeks.The Canadian Press read more