Chairman of A New and United Guyana (ANUG), Timothy Jonas believes that the Secretariat of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) is heavily compromised.
Jonas engaged the press on Saturday at the Arthur Chung Conference Center, the site for the national recount of ballots cast at the March 2nd poll, where he made those remarks.
GECOM’s Secretariat is headed by Chief Elections Officer, Keith Lowenfield.
“The whole of Guyana knows that GECOM has been compromised, one only has to look for Mingo and ask his whereabouts today to agree with me- GECOM has been compromised,” the ANUG Chair told the media.
He was referring to Region Four’s Returning Officer, Clairmont Mingo, whose handling of the tabulation derailed the declaration process, triggering the recount currently underway.
Jonas noted that the courts have made it pellucid that that GECOM is autonomous and independent and must do its job properly.
“Now, that is a wonderful principle, one that I subscribe to and one that any professional body would adhere to.”
However, he continued: “So it is well and good to say that they are autonomous and independent, they must do their job but you hire some people and you don’t hire other people and you have good reason for it.”
Those very people hired to carry out the job, are tainted, Jonas stated, noting that he has no confidence in them.
“Right now it is my fear and it is my belief that the people we’ve hired to do this job are compromised,” Jonas stated. “I have no confidence in the Secretariat, we know who their members are –the CEO is Lowenfield, next one down is Roxanne Myers, next one down is (Duarte) Hetsberger. I don’t know these people personally but we have seen their actions, we’ve seen their conduct. I think we can all agree none of them have voted PPP.”
While requests have been made for the removal of Lowenfield, there have also been calls by the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) for the removal of the Deputy CEO, Roxanne Myers, from the recount process.
The party had argued that Myers has been trying to stymie the recount process and undermine its transparency.
A direct complaint was also made to the Chair of GECOM, Justice (Ret’d) Claudette Singh for her direct removal.
Additionally, calls were also made to remove controversial Mingo from the recount, by the PPP which believed that integrity of the process would be severely compromised if he was present.
This was heeded to by the GECOM Chair.
Through analysis done by this newspaper, Mingo would have used inflated votes to give APNU+AFC Coalition a victory.
He made two declaration, both of which were challenged in court by the Opposition, leading to the recount.
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