– urge supporters to accept final results
The tension continued to escalate in the capital city and countrywide yesterday as more
than 48 hours after theGeneral and Regional Elections the official results were yet to be announced.
This did not stop a group of exuberant supporters of A Partnership for National Unity from taking to the streets in a motorcade around the city declaring victory for its Presidential Candidate David Granger.
This caused massive panic around the city as businesses hurriedly closed their doors and sent police ranks in a frenzy as the motorcade made its way back to Congress Place.
The atmosphere continued to be tense as rumours of impending hostility began to circulate.
A police intelligence vehicle which was passing Congress Place at the time sent angry supporters of APNU scurrying to apprehend the occupants but this was thwarted by police ranks that were on the scene at the time.
The situation was as such that the Guyana Election Commission called a hastily held press briefing with the Presidential and Prime Ministerial Candidates of the contesting parties.
At that special briefing GECOM Chairman, Dr Steve Surujbally, asserted that the results of Monday’s polls are in no way tainted.
In stressing his conviction that all parties concerned have followed the stipulated
rules, the Chairman urged that all accept the inevitable results, adding that the declaration will be done openly.
The press briefing which followed on the heels of a meeting between GECOM officials and representatives of the parties that contested this year’s national elections saw all agreeing to refrain from a recount of polls which was requested by the People’s Progressive Party/Civic.
At the press briefing, Dr Surujbally called on all to exercise restraint even as he urged leaders of civil society to appeal to their constituents to desist from acts of incitement.
“Don’t contribute to what can generate strife…we cannot and must not do anything to take our country into anarchy! Guyana cannot afford that…,” Dr Surujbally insisted.
However speaking on behalf of A Partnership for National Unity (APNU), Presidential Candidate, David Granger, insisted that there has been unwarranted delay in declaring the results. He made reference to a looming security crisis which he believes is being engineered by provocative acts which the party has been documenting with which a dossier will be compiled. The APNU Presidential Candidate said, too, that “Statements of Poll are the only legal basis” even as he called on the intellectual authors of what he saw as an impending crisis to desist and warned that they would bear the full responsibility.
The Alliance for Change (AFC) Presidential Candidate, Khemraj Ramjattan, spoke of the need for peace adding that “we don’t want to see any violence or confrontation. We feel in the interest of political parties that leaders must diffuse tension.”
Guyana is too dear to all of us to have only destruction…We will respect GECOM’s results notwithstanding delay and irks but GECOM has been handling the matter as best as they could.”
He offered his belief that the elections were fair and represents, at this point, that nothing untoward occurred.
PPP/C Presidential Candidate Donald Ramotar, in calling for peace, said that it is very important for all of Guyana to accept the results of the elections which he too believed were free and fair. “Elections are something to be celebrated despite frustrations from the people, we understand their anxiety and I would like to assure you that we have confidence in GECOM’s process and we are ready to accept the results.”
He sought to bring clarity to the belief of some that the PPP/C was the cause for a delay in the declaration of the results adding that “some wrongfully say that our challenge was to be blamed for the hold up of the results.”
In order to ensure that peace and democracy prevails, Ramotar said that the PPP/C has withdrawn its objections.
Presidential Candidate of The United Force, Peter Persaud, stressed the need for members of the public to cherish peace and harmony adding that “we are so far satisfied with our results”.
“Time was against us. If we had carried out a full scale campaign we would have seen a difference.”
He further called on members of the public to remain calm and accept the results of the elections which can only be declared by the Chief Elections Officer, Gocool Boodhoo. He urged too that persons resist rumour mongering adding that “we do not need violence. The country must go forward regardless of who wins; we cannot go backward…
“TUF believes in peace and with peace we can move forward….call on all parties to live up to code of conduct we have signed.”
Earlier in the day APNU had a briefing of their own and objected to what it calls undue influence being exercised by the PPP/Civic, one of the contestants in the recent general elections, over the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM).
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The chartered accountant, Mr. Nigel Hinds, who is a well known letter-writer to this newspaper had a missive published... more
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