Incoming Opposition Leader of the APNU+AFC Joseph Harmon has thrown his support behind the embattled Returning Officer for Region Four Clairmont Mingo who is facing four charges relating to electoral fraud.
Harmon on Sunday morning visited Mingo at the Sparendaam Police Station where he is being held in Police custody.
In a comment following the visit and which was later released by the Coalition, Harmon said: “they have brought up four trumped up charges against Mr. Mingo and certainly these are matters which we are going to address fully.”
“I said to Mr. Mingo and the people of Belladrum from whence he came…that we are fully supporting them and we are fully supporting the village. We will not allow our supporters or any Guyanese…to be abused, their rights violated by the police force under the direction of the government,” Harmon said.
Mingo was arrested by the Police on Tuesday last at his Calcutta, Mahaicony, East Coast Demerara home.
According to the APNU+AFC, there has been an increased Police presence in the community of Belladrum, West Coast Berbice (WCB) following a protest for Mr. Mingo’s release. The News Room understands that the residents on Sunday blocked the road, preventing vehicles from passing the main thoroughfare.
The residents are protesting and are calling for Mingo’s release from Police custody.
Divisional Commander Edmond Cooper was on the ground trying to dispel the crowd.
Chief Justice (ag) Justice Rishi Persaud on Saturday afternoon dismissed an application for Mingo to be released from Police custody on the grounds that he has been charged by the Police and will appear in Court on Monday.
But Harmon maintained that Mingo is being illegally kept in custody.
He was supported by Mingo’s Lawyer Darren Wade.
“There is no lawful reason to have Mr. Mingo in custody until now,” Wade said.
Mingo in a declaration on March 5, inflated the numbers in District Four to give the APNU+AFC a win at the March 2 polls. The High Court later found his actions to be illegal and ordered that he counts the figures in keeping with the laws but he again flouted the court’s order and made a second fraudulent declaration for District Four.
His actions led to a five-month delay in the declaration of the March 2 elections.