The rejection of the nominees for Chair of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) by President David Granger indicates a new level of election rigging.
This is according to PPP Executive Member, Dr. Leslie Ramsammy.
The former Minister of Agriculture said that it is a repudiation of the APNU+AFC Coalition and a declaration that the People’s National Congress (PNC) is now essentially the government. He opined that it is also a declaration that the PNC will stay in power for as long as they wish, not through electoral mandate, but through machinations of the electoral process. In short, Dr. Ramsammy believes that a new era of rigging is now being entrenched.
“We should not be under any illusion. APNU+AFC has decided to stay in government for as long as they can get away with it, without the will of the people. They have implemented a strategy to repeat what the PNC did between 1968 and 1992 and that is to rig elections in order to remain in power.”
Dr. Ramsammy via a missive to the media said that the government’s latest move in this regard sees the rejection of the nominees for the Chairmanship of GECOM from the Leader of the Opposition, Bharrat Jagdeo.
He said that this is the Government clearly setting the stage to name a Chairman, in their own deliberate judgment, a person that will carry out instructions from APNU+AFC, in the same sinister fashion as Judge Harry Bollers did prior to 1992.
“President Granger has indicated that the reason for rejecting the six nominees from Bharat Jagdeo, the Leader of the Opposition, is that the constitution demands the Chairman be a Judge, as Bollers was. But under the agreement and the amended constitution, the Chairman of GECOM is selected by the President from a list of six persons nominated by the Leader of the Opposition. That was the compromised position in 1992 and that has been the way the Chairman has been elected since then. This is not just a tradition; this is the way we overwhelmingly agreed to name the Chairman of GECOM.”
Dr. Ramsammy also stated that none of the Chairmen of GECOM since 1992 has been a Judge.
He said that Rudy Collins in 1992 was selected by Desmond Hoyte from a list of six persons named by Cheddi Jagan. He said that all the other Chairmen including, Doodnauth Singh, Joe Singh and Steve Surujbally, were selected by a PPP Government after six persons were nominated by the People’s National Congress. The politician stressed that none of these gentlemen were judges and only Doodnauth Singh was a lawyer.
“Indeed, none of the nominees from the People’s National Congress (24 in total) were judges.”
Furthermore, Dr. Ramsammy opined that it is hypocrisy at its grossest and absolute executive lawlessness for Granger to reject the nominees and signal that he will appoint the Chairman of GECOM in his own deliberate judgment.
The PPP member said that the Leader of the Opposition followed the Carter Agreement of 1992, followed the law and followed the PNC in selecting his list of six nominees. He said that while some of the six could be deemed as friendly to the PPP, some have been merciless in their opposition to the PPP.
“The law is important, but assurance and creating an environment of harmony and social cohesion are equally important… The rejection of the six nominees by the Leader of the Opposition to be a next Chairman of GECOM is not about the law alone. It is a declaration by Granger that the PNC in the form of APNU+AFC has seized power in Guyana.”
The former Minister of Agriculture said that it is intended to be a silent coup, but the stink it has already created is a nightmare for Guyana.
“The rotten stench is in every home and every corner in our country. It has reached Guyanese and our friends, wherever they live. Freedom-loving people, especially those who fought and sacrifice to gain freedom in our country, are no longer under any illusion…As of now; the name APNU+AFC is just a name. The government of Guyana is the PNC,” Dr. Ramsammy concluded.
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