I begin at where I should conclude. It is that the recount, whatever the methodologies agreed to and employed, will not settle anything; but merely serve as the basis for returning to some of the scorched earth battlefields that wounded us so grievously and still enduringly. The sense is that, no matter how much I may desire that closure, with moving on to the many great challenges that lie on the horizon, it is not going to happen, along the lines anticipated by so many. Some evidence of this surfaced throughout last year, with new elements added, because of new circumstances, in 2020.
First, I take the easy one. In any section of any region where the aggregate vote count exceeds the number of eligible voters, there is a problem, which would be the first in a series of cascading, interrelated ones. The automatic derivative of that is: should that occur, then from there to where? My solution would be to subtract those extra votes from whichever group exceeded the known and official number of eligible voters for that section, since it just can’t be, and raises not the specter or speculation of voter fraud, but the reality of the first of possibly many smoking guns.
Now I present the follow-up issues: which party is going to agree to such a move? And who in GECOM or the observer teams could make that decision at the point of the problem? On what authority, GECOM’s administrative and controlling role notwithstanding, would such sensitive powers originate? I don’t foresee any foreign team wanting to be in that position. And the last problematic assertions have to be these: if this is what is detectable, then what else is there by way of other crafty skullduggeries? How much do all of what cannot be accounted for means in total numbers? How much of such subsets when taken together are material and consequential? And, when all of that is taken into consideration, why should any responsible party leave it alone?
Second, and all of this is related to the first issue about possible and actual ballot box tampering; or, worse still, a voting process on March 2nd, where the underlying components were flawed and subject to any manner of fraudulent conduct, unacceptable result, and the associated stringent resistances. By trial and error, by hard decisions taken on the ground and made on the run, there should be a final picture of numbers and papers reviewed, passed upon, and last totalled. One side would be quick to claim victory; while the other would then be compelled to declare with the most strenuous and inflexible of objections that the entire process from the inception was begging for exploitation, as it was founded on the grossest of deceptions.
Third, and to be very specific, matters would boil down to that same thorny, bloated list, long deplored and damned, long pointed to and resisted against, but to no avail. The record is there to be dredged up and dumped in the public domain, inclusive of foreign presences, who may wish to be anywhere but here. For sure, parts of the dredging would be to remind one and all of the efforts aimed at getting to the bottom of the unreal and sanitizing (to preempt the controversies of today) through a house to house registration process, which ended in an untimely death. Like it or lump it, twist it or turn it, this is how I foresee the road that lies ahead, and how the cookie will crumble. I say this, too: there is some sturdy foundation for whatever flows from any recount process. Regardless of how poorly received this may be, it had to be said and in public, too.
The issue would no longer come to a grinding halt at who cheated. Despite the early protestations of the coalition being drowned out in the later clamours of its riggings, the president himself is on record as having said that the opposition’s claims of electoral triumph are based on deception. In view of the reciprocal clashing contentions, it is no longer a matter of who engaged in fraud, but who cheated more than whom. And to that, there will be no end, no acceptance by any of the two sides.
In closing, I reassert that, no matter what I may think, the weight of accumulated objections will be so extensive that a recount will fail to bring closure this most dreadful episode yet in Guyana’s political practices and life. This would be but another chapter in what I believe is ahead and where things will climax in this latest round of Elections 2020. It promises to be just another stalemate from the many political checkmates seen so far.
With all of this in mind, I do not see how any leader can acquiesce or concede. Or how any group of supporters will rally in agreement. I wish I could envision a different future. I cannot, not with what we started, not with where we are.
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