Aug 04, 2020 News
The Caribbean Community along with the Commonwealth yesterday offered their congratulatory sentiments to President Irfaan Ali, who was on Sunday sworn in as the ninth executive president of Guyana. In addition, these two regional bodies also called for the country’s politicians to embrace dialogue and tolerance towards fostering national reconciliation and cohesion for all Guyanese.
CARICOM, in a statement to the press yesterday, noted that it welcomes the conclusion of Guyana’s protracted General and Regional Elections of 2020 with the declaration of the final results. CARICOM Secretary-General Ambassador, Irwin LaRocque, who was present at Sunday’s swearing in ceremony, conveyed his congratulations to the new President. The Ambassador indicated that the Chairman of CARICOM, The Honourable Dr. Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines had called the President to extend his best wishes.
Meanwhile, Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Baroness Patricia Scotland, reaffirmed the Commonwealth’s unwavering commitment to supporting the people of Guyana in their quest to strengthen democratic and inclusive governance and ensure sustainable socio-economic development in the country. In this regard, she welcomed the swearing-in remarks by President Ali that his government will work in the interest of every Guyanese. She also urged all political actors to embrace dialogue and tolerance towards fostering national reconciliation and cohesion for all Guyanese.
The Secretary General sought to commend former President David Granger for his stewardship of Guyana since 2015, and for conceding in recognition of the declaration made by GECOM and in accordance with his commitment to honour the declaration made by the Chairperson of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), consistent with the Constitution of Guyana.
Through challenging times, Scotland said, the GECOM Chairperson Justice (ret’d) Claudette Singh “exemplified the courage, fortitude and grace required to uphold the constitution and the rule of law. I wish to thank her for the bravery and strength of purpose that she demonstrated throughout.”
In her final remarks, Scotland thanked the Chairman of the Commonwealth Observer Group to the March elections, The Honourable Owen Arthur, former Prime Minister of Barbados, who passed away recently.
She said, “As one of his very last gifts of notable leadership to the Caribbean and the Commonwealth, which he loved, was the work which he did for Guyana – the role he played in maintaining its trajectory on a democratic path. He would have rejoiced witnessing this momentous and peaceful democratic landmark for Guyana.”
Notably, and as always, Scotland encouraged any electoral grievances to be pursued through the prescribed legal channels.
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