Lowenfield says criticism of 156-day recount time is ‘absurd, distasteful’


See below full statement issued by the GECOM Secretariat:

GECOM’s Secretariat considered approved decisions by the Commission in preparation of its draft recount workplan:

8 April 2020, GEORGETOWN – The Secretariat of the Guyana Elections Commission has taken note of the public ridicule by some Commissioners on the draft workplan for the conduct of the national recount; presented for discussion, amendments and consideration.

Though cognizant that the 156 days proposed for the activity may be quite a lengthy duration in the present circumstance, the Secretariat had to consider matters of law in relation to the procedures to conduct a recount; approved decisions of the Commission and the current COVID-19 pandemic affecting the health situation of the population.

In this regard, the Secretariat considered the request by the Commission for each ballot to be projected on screen, examination of the contents of the ballot box i.e. ascertaining the number of electors on the list, the number of electors who voted, counting votes cast for both General and Regional Election and validation of spoilt, questioned and rejected ballots.

Against this backdrop, the estimated time for one ballot box to be counted was projected to be two hours; utilizing 3 workstations for 10 hours per day (9:00hrs -19:00hrs) at a central location to count 2339 boxes. Hence, the projected duration as indicated.

The Secretariat finds the comments by the Commissioners absurd, distasteful and unethical particularly since they are aware that the proposal considered the decisions of the Commission and its content is still being discussed for finalization.

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