GECOM to discuss voters’ list with APNU+AFC next Tuesday

1

The seven-member Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) had hoped to address concerns raised by the APNU+AFC Parliamentary opposition regarding the voters’ list at a meeting set for Tuesday, November 22 but that meeting never got underway.

It has been rescheduled for Tuesday, November 29 at 13:00hrs where the APNU+AFC says it intends to ask GECOM to respond to its disapproval of the voters’ lists and chart a pathway toward ensuring there is comfortable participation of all political parties at the upcoming March 2023 local government polls.

Opposition Leader Aubrey Norton is expected to lead the APNU+AFC delegation participating in the meeting with GECOM.

The APNU+AFC has been accused of not turning up to the meeting they had requested.

PPP/C nominated GECOM Commissioners Sase Gunraj and Clement Rohee have both addressed the absence in Facebook posts.

“Norton and his APNU delegation fails to show up at a GECOM Meeting, which they requested,’ Gunraj wrote, while Rohee noted: “Confusion in the APNU camp: major disagreement in leadership over attending and what to raise at meeting with GECOM.”

But according to Chairman of the People’s National Congress Reform – the major player in the APNU+AFC coalition, Shurwayne Holder, the meeting on Tuesday was not held because of procedural problems.

Holder claims that he did not receive a response to his request for the meeting and was only notified when a Zoom link for login was sent to him hours before the meeting yesterday.

But a GECOM Commissioner noted that there was a signature of someone at Holder’s office, confirming that the response was sent and received.

“GECOM indicated that they had a signature of someone who received the letter on behalf of Shurwayne Holder so I’m perplexed as to their non-appearance,” Gunraj said.

GECOM had also asked the APNU+AFC to provide a list of the issues they intend to raise. According to Gunraj, that has not been forthcoming.

Holder told the News Room Wednesday, during a telephone conversation, that the coalition intends, in large measure, to submit that list.

He noted, however, that the APNU+AFC’s concerns are public and remain the same.

In the first instance, it has to do with what it believes is a bloated voters’ lists, and also the APNU+AFC has now raised issues with the list to be used for the upcoming Local Government Elections.

“The list for LGE is not for LGE, that is for general elections. The rules are clear and there is a residency provision. So, GECOM must provide a list that confirms with the constituencies clearly laid out,” Holder said.

He also briefly noted that the Coalition also had issues with newly created and gazetted Neigbhourhood Democratic Councils and the boundaries of those NDCs.

“…and a host of other items,” he added.

Already, the AFC has said it will not participate in the local government polls in March 2023.

There have been repeated calls by the APNU+AFC opposition for the names of some categories of people to be removed from the voters’ list ahead of the polls next year though the associated concerns have been addressed by members of government, other political parties, the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) and ruled on by the High Court in a 2019 judgement handed down by Chief Justice (ag) Roxane George, S.C.

Members of government have described these calls as an attempt to disenfranchise voters, particularly those who live abroad.

But the AFC still believes that no election should be held with the existing voters’ list.

1 Comment
  1. Matthew says

    As long as Lampy, Pampy, ‘n Scampy is invited for de talks……it should be fruitful!

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.