The Guyana Press Association (GPA) has called on the Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) Justice (ret’d) Claudette Singh and Chief Elections Officer (CEO) Keith Lowenfield to be more accessible to the media to avoid confusion in the months leading to the March 02, 2020 general and regional elections.
Executive Member of the GPA, Denis Chabrol on Saturday evening issued a public call at the Association’s annual media awards and dinner held at the Pegasus Hotel, Kingston, Georgetown.
“In a country where former Presidents appear to hold some sway, I cannot resist this opportunity on behalf of the Executive and members of the Guyana Press Association (GPA) to publicly call on the Chairman of [GECOM]…and the Chief Elections Officer to be accessible to the media in this crucial period heading to the general elections,” Chabrol noted.
The veteran journalist noted that the media is tired of having to take information from politicians or politically aligned persons who may be bias in their reports.
“We are tired of hearing from who can best be termed political representatives with a vested interest on the Guyana Elections Commission. It is time for the Chairman of GECOM and the CEO to brief the media to avoid confusion and misinterpretation in the minds of voters,” he emphasised.
Chabrol is among several journalists who sits infront of GECOM headquarters for hours on a weekly basis to capture the outcome of statutory meetings. Following these meetings, questions are taken by Commissioners representing the Government and Opposition but many times, information are either willfully or subconsciously eliminated from these briefings.
Having access to the Chairman or CEO will provide a clearer and unbiased information on the decisions taken by GECOM and issues affecting the function of the Secretariat, the GPA noted.
GECOM is made up of the Chairman, three commissioners nominated by the Opposition and three commissioners nominated by the Government. The Opposition People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) is represented by Attorneys-at-law Sase Gunraj and Bibi Shadick and PPP member Robeson Benn. The Government is represented by Working People’s Alliance (WPA) member –a small party in the APNU+AFC Coalition Government –Desmond Trotman, Former Executive of the People’s National Congress Reform (PNC/R), Vincent Alexander and Charles Corbin.