3-member GPA Executive refuses to release voter’s list ahead of Sunday’s election
A three-member Executive Council of the Guyana Press Association (GPA) has decided not to release the voter’s list ahead of Sunday’s election where members of the media are slated to elect a new President.
In response to a petition submitted on Thursday by editors of 10 media houses for the voter’s list to be released, a statement issued by the incumbent Secretary of the GPA, Svetlana Marshall noted, “The Executive of the Guyana Press Association (GPA) today unanimously reaffirmed that the names of the 110 members who are eligible to vote for office bearers would be made known on Sunday, May 14, 2023 at the General Members Meeting and Elections, by the Returning Officer, Attorney-at-Law Ronald Burch-Smith. This is to preserve the confidentiality of a number of members who have requested that their membership remain confidential prior to the elections.”
Noting that the incumbent President of the GPA, Nazima Raghubir recused herself from the meeting when the names of the eligible voting members were presented, the statement did not address any of the concerns raised over the past weeks by members of the media.
The decision not to release the list was made by the three remaining members of the nine-member Executive Council – Denis Chabrol, Rawle Toney and Marshall.
The GPA’s decision was met with much criticism by some members of the media who questioned Marshall’s role in vetting the list since she, too, is slated to be nominated for a position at the election.
The petition submitted to the council detailed that the GPA has abandoned decades of practice by now refusing to register members and collect their dues on the day of elections in cases where dues were not paid.
“This year, the GPA Executive abandoned that convention and set May 6th as the date for the payment of dues for EXISTING members and have said registration of new members will be approved by the new executive.
“This decision effectively denies membership to many who are working members of the media for three years (and more) and who wish to participate in the elections,” the petition stated.
Meanwhile, the GPA in its response, claimed that it conducted a membership drive ahead of the elections, however, several editors have since stated that their media house did not benefit from this.
The GPA was slated to call elections in January 2020.
Anybody smell some DEAD fishhhyyy ?