President no closer to selecting next GECOM Chair
By Bibi Khatoon
Three weeks after Opposition Leader, Bharrat Jagdeo submitted the third list of nominees for the new Chair of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), President David Granger has noted that he is “not any closer to naming somebody as yet.”
The President, in an invited comment at the sidelines of a ceremony hosted to celebrate the 32nd anniversary of President’s College on Thursday, told News Room that the list is still being examined by himself and his colleagues.
“I have not received any further advice from my colleagues or Cabinet Ministers. As you know, this has taken the better part of the year, over eight months, and I’m very anxious to bring it to a successful conclusion,” he added.
The first two lists were rejected on the grounds that the nominees were not “fit and proper” to fill the position. The President’s decision was challenged by a private citizen, Marcel Gaskin in the High Court, during which the Chief Justice ruled that the all of the nominees do not have to be judge-like as was desired by the President.
The President told News Room that he will abide by the Chief Justice’s ruling. The Head of State went on to say that, “People do not understand that the Chief Justice has never changed my obligation to fulfill my constitutional duty. In the final analysis, regardless of the names submitted to me, I have to choose somebody who is fit and proper.”
The list of six persons was submitted to the President on August 25th, 2017 along with accompanying Curriculum Vitae after the rejection of two lists. The names on the list are Former GECOM Chair, Major General Ret’d Joseph Singh, Teni Housty, Sanjeev Datadin, Annette Arjoon-Martins, Onesi La Fleur, and Krishnadatt Persaud.