Opposition Commissioners walk out of GECOM meeting before talks on firing Lowenfield, others
Despite previous delays, the discussion on the removal of three officials within the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) who are accused of electoral fraud was further delayed despite being a major ticket item at a meeting held on Tuesday.
Government nominated Commissioner Sase Gunraj told the News Room that after participating in discussions on the other items on the agenda, when it was time to discuss the removal of the key officials, opposition nominated commissioners Vincent Alexander and Desmond Trotman walked out of the meeting.
That action disrupted the quorum that existed, forcing the GECOM Chairman, Justice (retired) Claudette Singh to adjourn the meeting.
This is not the first time that Justice Singh had to defer the discussion on the three motions by the government nominated commissioners which are calling for the dismissal of GECOM’s Chief Elections Officer (CEO) Keith Lowenfield, the Deputy CEO Roxanne Myers, and the District Four Returning Officer, Clairmont Mingo.
Gunraj said the Opposition Commissioners have directly refused to participate in the discussion, a mounting rejection to the calls for dismissal.
“The dilatory tactics resume and they get annoyed when you publicly shame them,” he said in a post on his Facebook page.
But in a subsequent interview with the News Room, Gunraj opined that everything was finally in place for the discussions to proceed. He now hopes that the GECOM Chairman would convene another meeting soon to discuss the issue to finality.
“This nation has been waiting very long and very patiently for a resolution to this issue, the longer we wait the anxiety of the nation continues to prevail.
“It seems as though we are suffering at the hands of theses persons all over again,” Gunraj said.
He explained that the Constitution makes provisions for GECOM meetings to go on in the absence of a quorum and, so, he hopes the GECOM Chair will use the options available to her.
“There are several options open to the Chair with regards to reconvening the meeting,” he assured.
On June 1, 2021, a motion to immediately dismiss the embattled Chief Elections Officer was moved by Gunraj, while his colleague Commissioner, Bibi Shadick moved another motion to remove his Deputy.
The third motion, moved by Commissioner Manoj Narayan seeks the immediate dismissal of Mingo.
With the current makeup of the Commission, the success of these motions now rely essentially on the vote of the GECOM Chairman.
The motions were filed more than a year after the three, along with others, have been accused of attempts to thwart the results of the March 02, 2020, regional and general elections.