Guyana General Elections: Democratic Transition MUST be premised on the Rule of LAW

Press Release by Guyana Trades Union Congress

The Guyana Trades Union Congress (GTUC) notes with deep concerns the tsunami of misinformation  permeating our social space and its impact on public opinion threatening to destabilise the Guyana Elections Commission’s (GECOM’s) declaration of  which party/group will form the next government.  It also threatens Guyana’s democracy, credibility of our institutions of governance, the rule of law and community relationships at a time when this small Caribbean nation’s oil rich potential is being exploited. It is not lost on us that the spread of a misinformation campaign can have far reaching and long lasting impact not only on Guyana but CARICOM, the Caribbean Community, and further afield.

Moved by this understanding GTUC seeks the support of Guyana and all concerned to have us navigate these challenges, by supporting the call to all persons, organisations and countries  with interest  in our well-being  to respect  the  internal mechanisms  embedded in our judicial system and the independent constitutional office of GECOM  whose chairperson Justice Claudette Singh  S.C has declared will “abide by all legal and procedural requirements to conclude its work.”

Please note:

GECOM– An independent constitutional body for conduction of National (General), Regional and Local Government elections in Guyana

  • The election process- The process, now sub judice, was halted due to an injunction moved by the Opposition People’s Progressive Party/C (PPP/C). At this stage the High Court having established its jurisdiction in favour of the Opposition is having its second sitting on Tuesday, 10thMarch, 2020.
  • GECOM from all public accounts has never refused to review queries made. What is evident is as it sought to implement administrative measures to address concerns a volatile environment was created obstructing its performance.
  • GECOM Chairperson Justice Singh following a subsequent demand from the Opposition to continue the process even as same was being adjudicated on, cited legal restraints as the matter was sub judice.
  • A misinformation campaign has started to condemn her learned silence and refusal to show contempt for the courts.

Government –President David Granger on many occasions declared  and continues to support the independence of GECOM allowing this institution to operate without interference from the government.

High-priced lobbying – vs- Representation of the People Act (Cap 1:03): These elections have been shaped by the Opposition paid Washington D.C, USA based powerful lobbying firm influencing international observers, citizens and other countries’ perceptions of the outcome of an elections not by GECOM and the Representation of the People Act, the sole constitutional institution/authority to administer the election under the said law.

GTUC recognises that whereas our laws may not address issues of this nature and it is the  right of any party to  use such means to advance its position  these should not come  at  the expense of allowing the process to work within the framework of the law i.e. Representation of the People Act.

Credibility of the Statements of Poll (SoPs) – The question of the credibility of the verification process has surfaced with several parties lending support to the issue as raised by the Opposition PPP/C. One presidential candidate, Ms. Phillis Jordan of the  People’s Republic Party (PRP), in a video circulating on social media  has since informed the nation that all of the small parties, none of which had its own SoPs in all the 10 Districts/Regions, were issued collated figures from an unnamed  major party. Hence the credibility of claims made by these parties in support of the major opposing force raises questions.

Derailing the GECOM process – GTUC is of the opinion that the carefully orchestrated misinformation and derailing of the GECOM process was also used to advance unrest by opposition supporters in a country that is known for its ethnic tensions during elections. These unrests when carefully analysed serves one major group only, and does not work for the good of the beguiled people.

Transition – Democratic transition from this phase to another should not be dictated to outside of the Representation of the People Act and GECOM’s constitutional right to so declare which party/group has won the Executive and apportion the seats in the National Assembly. GECOM is the authority to likewise state which party/group has won at the ten Regional Democratic Councils and apportion the seats on the Councils based on the votes received.

Historical Reference – Guyana situation is not dissimilar to that of the United States’ (U.S) 2000 presidential election which resulted in George W. Bush being declared President. In said election the U.S Supreme Court was asked to pronounce on the tabulation (hanging chads) between allotment of votes for candidates Bush and Alfred Gore.  The process of tabulation awaited the judicial outcome.  Guyana’s law allows for judicial review and resolution of our current challenges and we expect the U.S and other countries of the world to treat with our circumstance with no less respect than they treated with that of the U.S in 2000.

121 comments

  • More foam! More foam!

    My favourite Guyanese – Alvin Kallicharran, Rohan Kanhai, Clive Lloyd and Roy Fredericks. They brought me great joy and I could never wish Guyanese of both East Indian and African extraction anything but the absolute best. I scaled the heights with them when they put the licks in the arrogant colonial masters. Together! I saw how much it humiliated and hurt those masters. I saw their grudging respect.

    What you guys need is a political Clive LLoyd. Not a frothing at the mouth maniac!

    Foolish people, watch the sleight of hand that is going to take place while the foot soldiers fight each other!

    Abracadabra! Watch the oil money disappear into the pockets of the usual suspects!

    PS. Forbes Burnham started off with good intentions but lost his way. For some people power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

    Like

  • RE “morning Dr. GP.

    YES DEAR the madam AND I are both well this morning. PRAISE GOD

    Like

  • @ Silly Woman,
    But… You are a yard fowl…Just for you own ego! At least other yard fowls believe in something mor than themselves… You are a selfish, hard of hearing yard fowl. I’m very simple in my deliberation, there are two political forces in guyana… One is the will of african guyanese & the other is the will of the indian guyanese…I support the former. I’m not pretending to care more about about any other principle than that. I stand with the african guyanese community & their struggle for freedom from re-enslavemet!

    Now,Go pluck the curried corn from the ground over yonder!

    Like

  • @ Silly Woman March 14, 2020 9:06 AM
    “After all to curse somebody because they are female or male, or “Indian” or “African” is foolish because none of us get to choose our gender or our race. chooses their gender or their race. I warned them not to curse the electorate, the same electorate which they expected to vote for their favourite party. They did not listen.”
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    The hand of your ‘She’ God must have been guiding you when you penned such a magnanimous statement of contriteness.

    At least we know now neither the Bajan nor Guyanese boy children under the age of 4 have to worry about their fertile future and bloodline naturally prone to violence.

    We are sure a modern day feminist version of the Maurice Chevalier ditty will live on in the hearts of every virgin girl knowing that their testosterone-driven half has their ‘back’ in the race of human existence.

    ‘Thank heavens for little boys for without them what would little (naughty) girls like the little ‘silly wo(e)man’ do!’

    The worst toy which ‘Man’ invented has been the female comforting dildo.
    Cursed be those ancient eunuchs! LOL!!

    It’s no different from a priest standing up while using a computer to preach the gospel of Science in his church.
    He automatically becomes erectile(ly) redundant!

    Like

  • Caricom will play an important role in the recount of votes in Guyana according to chairman Mia Mottley. An Caricom observer team was requested to be present before the recount is restarted.

    Like

  • @ David March 15, 2020 6:10 AM

    What is Peter Wickham saying about this? He seems to think he cannot be wrong. There seems to have been a lot propaganda by the main stream media in favor of the opposition. The vote was strictly along racial lines and one shouldn’t have been surprised.

    Like

  • @Dr.Lucas

    To be fair he said the swing margin was unusual in region 4 but he is prepared to accept the result.

    >

    Like

  • @ David March 15, 2020 7:19 AM

    Wickham is always touting the fact that he is a scientist -his claims to being a scientist are laughable. The hard sciences do not consider things like economics and politics, as science. He has shown his bias as demonstrated by his declarations on last Sunday’s call-in program on V.O.B.. A true scientist would never have done what he did, He is so unprofessional, that he thinks he is infallible. He has no back ground in mathematics. The statistical tools that he uses are all available on the internet. One can down load the formula and plug in the data and a result is arrived at. He tries to project the image that it takes a genius to do what he is doing. One must now wonder on whose behalf he did the poll. The man is not as good as he tries to make out.

    Like

  • The controversy of this election may well give a voice to those who argue for the partition of Guyana.

    The logical partition would be to slice the country into three parts.

    One third for her indigenous people, another third for those of East Indian descent and the remaining third for those of African descent.

    We have to avoid the semantics of indulging in political correctness which refuses to acknowledge or discuss the status of the African Guyanese and whether or not their ambitions and their freedoms are being throttled by their East Indian cousins.

    We have to acknowledge that East Indian communities tend to promote a culture of separateness where ever they find themselves.

    Yes, both groups should embrace what they have in common. However the voice of pragmatism should prevail. Historical interactions between East Indians and Africans have always ended badly for those of African origins.

    I hope that Barbados and other Caribbean islands are taking note.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @TLSN March 15, 2020 8:07 AM “We have to avoid the semantics of indulging in political correctness which refuses to acknowledge or discuss the status of the African Guyanese and whether or not their ambitions and their freedoms are being throttled by their East Indian cousins.”

    Since 1964 Guyana has had 51 years of African descended Prime Ministers and 12 years of African descended Presidents. And many, many African descended Deputy Prime Ministers, Vice Presidents, Cabinet Ministers, Judges, Magistrates, Police Commissioners, Permanent Secretaries, other senior civil servants etc. So how did this alleged “throttling” take place?

    How is it with all of this political and civil power you want to make out that the people without the political and civil power have manage to “throttle” the powerful African descended population?

    Smart hard working Guyanese, both Indian descended, and African descended have been leaving Guyana for decades, a massive, massive brain and skills drain. And this migration has been driven largely by the always threat of violence by BOTH races against the other. A place of Indian yard fowls, and African yard fowls.

    Guyana does not need to be partitioned. Guyana needs to start operating on MERIT.

    Why are people so afraid of MERIT?

    Like

  • @ TSLN March 15, 2020 8:07 AM

    Are you crazy? What is this foolish talk about “One third for her indigenous people”.

    They were there first ‘ A more equitable situation would be as follows: ninety-four percent for the indigenous people. Three percent each for the East Indians and blacks. The latter deserve no more .As a matter of fact both should be driven out.

    Like

  • Youtube lecture by an indian national, 5 minute introduction by African Guyanese. – “Dr. Velu Annamalai” full video is 1:40:15

    Like

  • Youtube “Dr. Velu Annamalai”

    Like

  • Youtube “Dr. Velu Annamalai” lecture all caribbeans must see full video is 1:40:15

    Like

  • Youtube
    Lecture by Indian national who wants Africans around the world to hear. 5 min introduction by African Guyanese man.
    “Dr. Velu Annamalai-The Black Untouchables of India”
    Full video 1:40:15

    Like

  • The Editor,

    Controversial CARICOM member supervising Guyana election results

    A Caribbean Community (CARICOM) High Level Team is now in Guyana supervising the recounting of ballots from the March 2, 2020 elections.

    One of the 5-member team is Chief Elections Officer (CEO) of the Election and Boundaries Commission (EBC) of Trinidad and Tobago, Ms Fern Narcis-Scope.

    Mrs. Narcis-Scope is a controversial figure like Guyana’s Keith Lowenfield. They both hold the same position in their respective elections supervisory administrations.

    Narcis joined the EBC in 2010. As a contract legal officer, her promotion to the CEO on September 17, 2017 was marred in controversy. It was challenged by attorneys Kent Samlal and Abdel Mohammed acting on behalf of Lena Sahadeo, the Deputy CEO.

    Having 24 years’ experience, Sahadeo believed that she was more qualified and experienced for the position, and that Narcis was her junior. It was believed that Narcis had links with the ruling People’s National Movement (PNM), but this was denied by the EBC.

    When it lost the general elections in 2015, the Opposition UNC, led by Kamla Persad-Bissessar, challenged and the EBC in court. Narcis was the EBC’s senior legal adviser.

    The challenge was based on the sudden decision of the EBC to extend the time for voting from 6 pm to 7 pm throughout the country without any official notification to the UNC and its constituent parties.

    The UNC lost its case but the Court ruled that the EBC’s decision to extend the polls by one hour was wrong. Chief Justice Ivor Archie said that while the EBC did exceed its power by extending the voting time, it was not so outrageous a breach to declare the election result null and void.

    As the EBC’s then-senior legal adviser, Narcis’s judgement and integrity are questionable. She is now further compromised by being an arbitrator in GECOM that is ignoring a court injunction that credible election results must be based on the verification of the Statements of Poll (SOPs), and not on the recount of the ballots.

    I call on CARICOM to revoke the appointment of this controversial figure from its supervisory team NOW.

    Sincerely,

    Samaroo Siewah
    Trinidad and Tobago

    16th March 2020

    Like

  • Felicia Doughtz

    Pay attention folks… Indian politics has no boundaries. Samaroo Siewah, a “Hindu” trinidadian indian, is asking CARICOM to fire a fellow trinidadian, who is an African trinidadian woman. The fact that this minority member of CARICOM, could be so bold as to attempt this, to further his own ethno-political motives, without any fear of a ethnic,social,political and economic backhand, is an indictment on the african caribbean community & CARICOM itself.

    Like

  • Commissioner Robeson Benn speaks to members of the media about encounter with the police inside the Arthur Chung Convention Centre compound.

    Like

  • March 17, 2020

    The Editor,

    All five Black representatives from CARICOM

    When one looks at the five representatives from the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) – all Blacks – selected to supervise the re-counting of votes of the Guyana general elections in this severely ethnically-divided society, it boggles the mind beyond belief.

    This was an extremely insensitive move by CARICOM, and was not one to inspire confidence, especially when one of the persons in the group played a critical role in the general elections of her own country which was argued in court as an attempt to disenfranchise one particular ethnic group.

    Which Black person in Guyana would find it acceptable if all the five persons were Indians?

    It is too late to change the composition of this group.

    We might as well put the fox to guard the hen-house, or dogs to count the eggs.

    Swami Aksharananda

    Cornelia Ida, WCD, Guyana

    Like

  • Felicia Doughtz

    Listen to this joker! Listen to the language carefully! This man is a Brahminist (“Hindu”) and reduces africans to a mere colour, that is the bottom of the stratification in his religion, while distancing his group with geographical reference. Chatur-Varna (Four [Skin] Colours), is the Brahminist theological fantasy for the stratification of caribbean society & the world.

    White
    Yellow
    Red
    Black

    These colours are representative of SKIN COLOURED RACES! This is why indians see blackness as derogatory and never admit their blackness, while using black to refer to africans exclusively. It’s a hidden insult to be black skinned with african features in Brahminism a.k.a “Hinduism”. This Brahminist’s usage of “Fox” & “Dogs” to describe african members of CARICOM is not innocent or merely metaphorical.If it was metaphorical, it is insulting to suggest that african caribbeans,the vastly majority ethnic group of CARICOM, as well as having 330+ years of seniority over indian residence in the hemisphere need to place indians on the observer team to ensure honest??? Haaaaaaaaa!!! Witness the obnoxious , twisted psyche of those who want to regain political control of guyana. Barbados is next!

    Like

  • Mottley says ‘it is clear there are forces that do not want to see the votes recounted’

    -warns that any gov’t sworn in without a credible tabulation would lack legitimacy

    CARICOM’s electoral rescue mission collapsed dramatically yesterday after legal action against it and Chair of the movement, Mia Mottley charged that there were forces here that do not want the votes from the March 2nd general elections recounted and she warned again that a government sworn in without a credible tabulation would not have legitimacy.

    The decision by CARICOM to withdraw its five-member mission came after a person who had been an election candidate for the governing APNU+AFC secured an injunction from the court of Justice Franklyn Holder against the recount.

    https://www.stabroeknews.com/2020/03/18/news/guyana/mottley-says-it-is-clear-there-are-forces-that-do-not-want-to-see-the-votes-recounted/

    Like

Join in the discussion, you never know how expressing your view may make a difference.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s