May 14, 2015 News
…Says recount of ballots premature, against the law
A Partnership for National Unity plus the Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) is calling on the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) to officially declare within the shortest possible time, the winner of the 2015 election so that the country can move on.
Additionally, a team from the APNU+AFC met with the Commission yesterday evening to impress upon the entity, that the recounting of the ballots before the results are declared is not only premature but against the law.
The team comprised of APNU+AFC’s Presidential Candidate, David Granger, APNU General Secretary, Joseph Harmon, AFC’s co-founder, Raphael Trotman, APNU’S Shadow Minister of Legal Affairs, Basil Williams, APNU’s Shadow Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine, and AFC Leader, Khemraj Ramjattan.
Granger told members of the media that the APNU+AFC delegation met with the full commission and expressed its concerns in the delay of making a declaration of the results of the 2015 General and Regional elections.
The politician said that it articulated to the Commission, that the delay has forced business to come to a virtual halt and has fuelled much uncertainty and tension in the country.
He said that the coalition made it known to GECOM that the longer the delays, the more dangerous the country is becoming day by day and “the more likely we were to move to the edge of disorder.”
Additionally, Harmon expressed that at this time, he wants to urge the Guyanese populace to remain calm and trust in the leadership of the APNU+AFC.
“We have gotten certain assurances from the elections commission and we will bring a resolution to what is happening here. We were told by GECOM that they will be sharing 94 percent of the ballots they have counted with the public and the press tonight, and you will be able to make your judgment as to where we stand in this process. I trust that as soon as you do that you will be able to make the necessary deductions of what is happening in these elections. In the meantime, please be calm for violence will do nothing for us. We are the next government and we are asking you to trust us,” the APNU General Secretary appealed.
Trotman then spoke to the request by the People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) to GECOM for a recount of some of the already counted ballots.
The AFC executive member said that the opposition understands that the Commission begun the recounting process and asked for them to cease the exercise forthwith.
“We believe the request for a recount, though they have started, was done in error and the commission should not continue beyond the few started,” the lawyer added.
He noted however, that the election body was unable to declare prior to its 9 pm press conference last night, if they will concede to the opposition’s request.
Trotman emphasized that the reason the APNU+AFC asked for the process to come to a halt, was based on the fact that no reasons were given to GECOM by the PPP/C as to why the recount was needed.
“What we have is just a plain request but no reasons given why,” he added.
Harmon said, too, that there were no reasons provided to the election body and it gives the impression that it was not a request but an instruction to the Commission. He said that the PPP/C needs to realize that it is just another contesting party and should therefore adhere to the protocols in this regard.
The APNU+AFC team also related that Williams wrote to GECOM’s Chairman, Dr. Steve Surujbally, pointing out that the opposition has a different interpretation of the laws and as such, believes that a recount can only be deemed legal and effected, until the results for the election is declared. Anything before that is only premature, the members said.
Granger said that he believes the government’s “premature” request for a recount of some of the ballots, seems to be a deliberate plan to delay the possibility of having early results and to cause great distress.
Picture saved in Thursday as Granger
Caption: APNU+AFC Presidential Candidate, David Granger
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