Electoral reform among government’s highest priority – Attorney General
Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Anil Nandlall, SC, has reiterated the governing People’s Progressive Party Civic’s (PPP/C) commitment to ensuring electoral reform is achieved in Guyana.
It comes two days after the United States Department announced its support for an 18-month project to strengthen the capacity of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) and the Attorney General’s Chambers regarding electoral processes.
In a statement on Thursday, Nandlall expressed deep gratitude for the assistance offered and stressed the importance of strengthening Guyana’s constitutional framework, electoral laws and the entire electoral machinery.
This, he said, is in order to protect democracy in Guyana from being undermined and penetrated by fraud, in particular of the type and magnitude which was witnessed following the March 2020 regional and general elections.
“I feel compelled to emphasize that these matters are among the government’s highest priority. As they are vital to good governance, public order and national development. Therefore, time is of the essence. These reforms are intricately tied to Guyana’s electoral cycle and as a result, the assistance offered must manifest itself swiftly” the Attorney General stressed.
The project will be implemented by the International Republican Institute.
Through this project, GECOM, the Attorney General’s Chambers, and Guyanese CSOs will collaboratively consolidate and improve local electoral and constitutional law knowledge, establish an internal timeline to address electoral reform, improve collaboration for joint advocacy actions, and prioritize electoral and constitutional law issues while promoting reform through citizen engagement.
Nandlall disclosed that on Tuesday last he met with Resident Programme Director of the International Republican Institute (IRI), Dorota Ryzy and Local Programme Coordinator, Sara Bharrat at his Chambers.
“The IRI expressed its commitment to work with the Government of Guyana and the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), in making these reforms a reality,” the statement added.
Ryzy reiterated that this support is coming from the Government of the United States of America, represented by the US Embassy in Georgetown and IRI will be coordinating and implementing the programme.
The IRI promised to liaise with the Canadian High Commission as well as the Indian High Commission, both of whom have already pledged assistance to Guyana in this endeavor and will coordinate with those offices to avoid duplication and to ensure the best use of the resources are available.
The Attorney General and the IRI representatives agreed to meet at periodic intervals.