President submits Patterson, seven others for GECOM Chair
The Government has submitted eight names to the Leader of the Opposition Bharrat Jagdeo for consideration for the post of Chair of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM).
This was disclosed by Director General at the Ministry of the Presidency, Joseph Harmon following a meeting between the Government and Opposition members on Monday afternoon at the Castellani House.
The Director-General did not want to disclose the names but documents seen by the News Room show that the President has resubmitted former Chair of GECOM Justice (ret’d) James Patterson who was forced to demit office after the court ruled that the President’s decision to unilaterally appoint him in 2017 was flawed.
The other names are Stanley Ming, Kessaundra Alves, Dr Aubrey Armstrong, Kadim Khan, Kim Kyte-Thomas, Justice Claudette LaBennett and Stanley Moore.
The President at a press conference on Thursday last after the meeting with Jagdeo was asked whether he will reconsider Justice Patterson for the post given that he served for 20 months.
However, he said, “with respect, Justice Patterson is part of Guyana’s electoral history, I don’t want to go back to that.”
Meanwhile, following Monday’s meeting between the Opposition and the Government, Harmon told the media that, “The President suggested eight names to be considered as well in this hammering process and we agreed that we will look at those…with respect to finding six names,” he noted.
“We believe that the consensual process suggested by the Caribbean Court of Justice…requires us to meet in this way and work so that we can find a consensus. This is important in our view for the people of Guyana,” Harmon said.
Harmon along with Ministers of Public Security Khemraj Ramjattan and Public Health, Volda Lawrence represented the President while People’s Progressive Party (PPP) Members, Gail Teixeira, Anil Nandlall and Bishop Juan Edghill represented the Opposition Leader.
Nandlall, who also spoke with the media following Monday’s meeting, disclosed that daily meetings will commence Tuesday.
“We are going to expend every effort to conclude the process as quickly as possible,” he said.
The Opposition Leader at the weekend disclosed that he has resubmitted 11 names from 18 which were previously rejected.
Those names are: Environmentalist Annette Arjoon-Martins, Justice of Appeal B.S Roy (ret’d), Captain Gerry Gouveia, major General (ret’d) Joseph Singh, Attorney-at-law Mr. Kashir Khan, former Senior Magistrate Krishnadatt Persaud, Human Rights & Conflict Resolution Consultant Lawrence Latchmansingh, major General (ret’d) Norman McLean, Onesi LaFleur, Former Chair of the Private Sector Commission Ramesh Dookhoo and Puisne Judge (ret’d) William Ramlall.