Apr 12, 2020 News
People’s Progressive Party/Civic,(PPP/C) Executive and Attorney- at -Law, Anil Nandlall, is appealing to Chairperson of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), retired Justice Claudette Singh, to use her powerful casting vote to end the political stalemate which is holding the nation at ransom.
Nandlall in a lengthy Facebook post shared his thoughts on the proposal made to GECOM for the recount process of votes cast at the March 2, 2020 elections. The suggestion made by Chief Elections Officer (CEO) of GECOM, Keith Lowenfield, is for the nationwide recount to be done in 156 days – a proposal which is widely rejected by the political opposition as a delay tactic.
In his post, Nandlall shared the same view that there is a deliberate ploy at the level of GECOM to further delay the process. According to him, it is the Government –aligned Commissioners who continue to do everything possible to frustrate and delay the recount.
“In this regard, Commissioner Vincent Alexander, in essence, wants the decision to do a recount altered, to do an audit, instead. This must be fiercely resisted. No one ever called for an audit and no decision was ever made to do an audit. It is not provided for in the law and will only delay the process further,” he said.
Giving an overview of the events which followed the elections, the Attorney pointed to “the constant back and forth,” between agents of GECOM and the political representatives which lead to the delays.
Nandlall said, however, that Justice Singh in her capacity as Chairperson of GECOM cannot be completely exonerated from blame for what is happening.
He emphasized that this can only be put to rest if the Chairperson raises her proverbial gavel and ends the delay.
“Her failure to act decisively by using that powerful casting vote with which she is legally equipped, has contributed significantly to the cabal currently holding this nation at ransom. However, they will not succeed. We are nearing the end of the road. Justice Singh must take command now.”
Under the command of the Chairperson, Nandlall held that the recount must be kick started next week and conclude with every convenient speed.
The lawyer emphasized, “She must ensure that it is done transparently, voting in support of our request to have the process televised and streamed live, will go a far way in achieving this objective.”
He added, “In the end, this process must enjoy public confidence. I remind her of the following stirring plea which she made in her submissions to the Court, in the Ulita Moore case ‘In the present volatile situation, which pervades our country. No effort must be spared to assure everyone that the process was fair and impartial. Lingering doubts that hang like a sword of Damocles over the head of the Commission must be removed. Confidence in the electoral process must be restored’.”
Further, Nandlall urged all to support the PPP and reject any proposal which comes from the APNU/AFC or Lowenfield.
“Like Mingo, he is part of the problem and cannot be part of the solution. In terms of the actual counting, we prefer that GECOM calls in aid, a reputable auditing firm or the Office of the Auditor General to assist.”
“The Secretariat staff at GECOM no longer enjoys public confidence,” he asserted.
“GECOM has the power to enlist such assistance, as is expressed in Article 162(1)(b), the Commission shall issue such instructions and take such action as appear to it necessary or expedient to ensure impartiality, fairness and compliance with the provisions of this Constitution or any Act of Parliament on the part of persons exercising powers or performing duties connected with or relating to the matters aforesaid,” he said.
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