– floats shared governance but will not coalesceAfter decades of failed promises by the two main political parties in Guyana, A New and United Guyana (ANUG) is entering the political arena with a promise to work in a constitutional framework that demands inclusion and cooperation for the interest of all Guyanese.The party pointed out that a vast majority of the electorate is already loyal to one of the two major ethnic parties – People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) and the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) – which they support in the belief that they gain some sort of protection if their party is in office. However, the reality is that when one party is in office, the other section of theThe founding members of A New and United Guyana (ANUG) at the party’s launch on Fridayelectorate feels abandoned, marginalised, and discriminated against.To this end, ANUG is imploring Guyanese to support the party and assist in creating a constitutional system that will bring ethnic parties to share executive power and give the nation confidence that a system of governance will be introduced to protect their interests.“We believe that the only solution is to create a system where both political parties share executive power so that all Guyanese can move forward in confidence that their combined interests are protected. The two main political parties are unwilling to take these steps, despite decades of promises by both of them. Only a separate political movement, a third party, can motivate them to do so,” the new party said.ANUG outlined that the large ethnic groups consisting of over 75 per cent of the voting population and a competitive political system make the political context extremely toxic – an environment that rewards ethnic loyalty at the ballot box and makes politicians ethnic entrepreneurs. However, the party noted that there are constitutional ways out of this dilemma.“We believe that Guyanese have already paid the human and material price, and ignorance can no longer be the excuse. So we stand ready with an agenda to radically reform the political system under which we live and establish a system that will give all ethnicities an equitable constitutional stake in executive decision-making and implementation,” ANUG assured.The party committed to work from the first day of taking constitutional office or being able to otherwise influence governmental policy, to establish shared executive power and within one month of being able to do so, set about the constitutional reform process to make the necessary changes in the Constitution. It also promised to never enter a coalition with any other political party for the purpose of securing a role in Government.In fact, one of the party’s founding members, former Speaker of the National Assembly and former PPP Executive Ralph Ramkarran, at the party’s launch on Friday at Moray House, gave an undertaking that ANUG would not join either of the major parties to form a Government.“We will not go into a Government, if one of the parties gains a plurality and not a majority and they are searching for a partner to give them a majority, we wouldn’t be there… What our role will be is to say this is what we want. If you support this, we will support you and what we want is to build a governance system that is inclusive of everyone and which will solve the political problems of Guyana,” the veteran politician told a packed gathering at the party’s launch.Ramkarran, who came out of political retirement after resigning from the PPP back in 2011, is confident that ANUG is strong enough to win the upcoming elections or at least get enough seats in the National Assembly to hold the balance of power.According to the party, politicians’ promises to Guyanese must mean something and the people should also have some way of enforcing promises. In an effort to demonstrate its commitment, the party said it will make these two main commitments legally enforceable, that is, anyone will be able to go to the courts for the appropriate declarations if the party is to violate either or both commitments. If the court rules against the party, ANUG legally commits to resign from Parliament.Apart from Ramkarran, other frontrunners in the party are former PPP Government Minister Dr Henry Jeffrey, Attorney-at-Law Timothy Jonas, businessmen Beni Sankar and Kian Jabour, as well as Akanni Blair, who was recently appointed PPP’s Vice Chairman in Linden. The party is now looking to pull in female members, saying that those they have approached thus far are willing to support ANUG but fear discrimination to publicly join the party.Moreover, ANUG is also facing this conundrum with the business community, saying that while businesses have pledged to support the new party, they are only willing to do so anonymously.ANUG will be pushing on this agenda: opportunities for youth, reducing poverty, streamlining the oil and economic sectors, tackling corruption and climate change.