Ramjattan confident elections petition will be successful
Leader of the Alliance for Change (AFC) Khemraj Ramjattan said he is confident that the APNU+AFC’s elections petition will be successful.
“I have absolute faith in the process that we are going to get some positives out of it and it probably will be the second successful elections petition that has been brought in this country,” Ramjattan said on Friday during the party’s first press conference since it was voted out of office.
The press conference was held virtually and the News Room was not invited.
Two Georgetown residents – Claudette Thorne and Heston Bostwick –on Thursday filed an application for leave with the High Court to file an elections petition intended to question the March 02 general and regional elections. The petition is expected to be filed on Monday.
The application entails a list of documents to be presented as evidence but not the Coalition’s Statements of Poll (SOP).
Asked about this on Friday, Ramjattan said “we are dealing with a petition that is dealing with what illegalities and irregularities found in the recount.
“The evidence then will be largely that from the CEO and all the summaries from the various officers that were there that saw all those things.”
He alluded to the list of persons who were allegedly out of the country on elections day but were reportedly ticked as voted on the Official List of Electors. He said these things were unearthed during the recount and though some have been debunked in the media, “that record is admissible in a court of law.”
The AFC Leader is of the view that the governing People’s Progressive Party will have to present these persons in court.
“…the PPP will have to bring those people to rebut that, they will have to bring the 4,800 names that the…said as the people not in Guyana at that time, whose names were ticked off in these various East Coast boxes as being here in Guyana.
“So is the PPP who will have to say now these people –bring them to court –…there we will cross examine them…that will be the true acid test,” Ramjattan said.
Meanwhile, according to Chairman of the AFC Raphael Trotman the party will file two elections petition in case one fails.
“It’s not the first time that multiple petitions have been filed following an election and with good reason- should one fail, there’s one to stand up because…the law with respect to petitions is very strict, compliance is very strict so if there is a failing…it is important to have multiple petitions,” Trotman said.
Trotman said he expects that the application will be considered and approved speedily by the court.
“We expect that the leave will be speedily granted and we expect the courts will not get themselves caught up with frustrating the speedy hearing of these petitions and we do want to believe that on the other hand, the petitions and trials and hearings will be enabled by the courts to be heard speedily,” Trotman said.
The applicants in the case want the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) to use the vote count from the Ten Returning Officers to declare the results of the elections. That would include the District Four vote Count which has been condemned as fraudulent.
The petitioners contend that the Chief Elections Officer was not required to use the data from the national vote recount to produce his elections report from which the results were declared.
Alternatively, the petitioners want the Court to order fresh elections in 90 days after its ruling on the case.