Jan 19, 2021 News
– orders GECOM to hand over SOPs in 2nd matter
Kaieteur News – Failure to comply with a fundamental principle in legal procedure has led to one of the election petition cases being thrown out of the High Court. Chief Justice (Ag) Roxane George-Wiltshire, yesterday dismissed election petition (99/P) for procedural non-compliance of service on leader of the A Partnership for National Unity +Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) party and former President, David Granger.
The Chief Justice (CJ) nonetheless agreed to continue hearing the other election’s petition case (88/P) which was filed on behalf of Claudette Thorne and Heston Bostwick to challenge the legitimacy of the elections report which allowed for Dr. Irfaan Ali to be sworn in as President.
In this case, the CJ ordered the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) to hand over its Statements of Poll and Statements of Recount to the High Court for safe-keeping pending the hearing and determination of the election petition case scheduled to continue in April 7, 2021.
The orders were issued at the request of Senior Counsel, Douglas Mendes, the lawyer of the People’s Progressive Party Civics’ leader, Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo, and Attorney-at-Law Kashir Khan who is representing The Change Guyana party.
Mendes had requested an order be made that the Chief Election Officer produces all of the election documents and put them into the custody of the Registrar of the Court for possible inspection by the Court at a later date.
The CJ granted the request to allow for safe keeping of the documents. She noted the Statements of Recounts (SORs) will also be retrieved and kept in the possession of the Registrar.
Meanwhile, in her ruling to dismiss petition 99/P, Chief Justice George-Wiltshire, said that non-adherence of service in a specific timeline would make the petition a non-starter. She noted that because Granger was not served within the required five-day timeline, and he has been found to be a necessary party in the proceedings, the petition was declared a nullity and dismissed.
“From the time it was served out of time on the necessary party, it was a non-starter,” Justice George-Wiltshire said, adding that the rules of filing an elections petition must be strictly complied with.
Elections Petition (99/P) filed by Monica Thomas and Brenan Nurse who sought to challenge the outcome of the March 2, 2020 Regional and General Elections.
In dismissing that case, the CJ rejected supplementary affidavits filed by the petitioners which sought to explain that Granger made a mistake when he signed September 25, insisting that he had signed on September 18.
Alluding to their explanations, the CJ in her decision described the arguments as no less than “preposterous” and “absurd.” She therefore noted that Court had no other choice than to discard the matter.
At the last hearing, Senior Counsel John Jeremie, one of the lead attorneys arguing in the election’s petition case, had asked the High Court to ignore the purported late service of documents on Granger.
Jeremie, who represented applicants in both petitions (88/P) and (99/P), was at the time responding to claims contained in a preliminary application by Attorney General, Anil Nandlall, to strike out the election’s petitions based on the faulty service.
In his submissions before the Court, Jeremie said that the issue of late or defective service upon which Nandlall based his application to strike out the petition should be interpreted as nothing more than a careless blunder on the part of the petitioners.
However, Senior Counsel Douglas Mendes, lawyer for PPP/C Leader, argued strongly that the evidence in the date of service to Granger and the date of Granger’s acknowledgement was contradictory and unreliable. The evidence, which included a signed document by Granger himself, acknowledging receipt, shows that the documents were not served within the legally prescribed period.
“The petitioner is arguing that the document was prepared on September 15 but all the other documents including one which Granger himself signed shows that it was served on September 25,” the lawyer had pointed out.
Mar 07, 2021Umani and S&S Supermarket comes onboard Kaieteur News – All is set for exciting action today as the National Covid-19 Task Force has given green light for the staging of the WeCare...
Mar 07, 2021
Mar 07, 2021
Mar 07, 2021
Mar 07, 2021
Mar 07, 2021
Kaieteur News – I get queries each year from people wanting to know about this or that person or event. Many emails... more
By Sir Ronald Sanders Kaieteur News – If U.S. President, Joe Biden, eases the trade embargo against Cuba, one benefit... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]