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Founder Leader of the PPP -
Dr. Cheddi Jagan
 
President of Guyana
H.E Bharrat Jagdeo
 
General Secretary of the PPP
Donald Ramotar

 

 

NO JUSTIFICATION FOR PUSHING ELECTIONS BEYOND CONSTITUTIONALLY DUE DATE

 

The People’s Progressive Party (PPP) is dismayed and disappointed in the `revised time-table’ proposed by the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) Secretariat which proposes General Elections to be held beyond the constitutionally due date of August 4.

Having regard to the constitutional mandate to hold elections not later than the due date and the consequences of GECOM’s failure to effectively fulfil its mandate, which it had consistently promised to do, the PPP expresses its utter dissatisfaction with the new proposals for the following reasons:

  1. The Secretariat has consistently published progress reports indicating its readiness to commence the Claims and Objections process on April 5, 2006.
  2. The Joint International Technical Assessors (JITA) in his most recent Assessment Report dated March 13, 2006 stated `Preparations for the Claims and Objections period remain consistent with GECOM’s Election Management Plan and pending instructions from the Commission, the Preliminary List of Electors (PLE) will enter scheduled production in the last week of March 2006. It must be noted that the elections management plan referred to by the JITA stated that the Claims and Objection to commence on April 05, 2006.
  3. The time-table presented by the Secretariat before the proposed revision reflected the following activities to be completed to facilitate the commencement of the Claims and Objection (C&O) period.

 

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Activities

Status

1

Provide Offices of Registrars, their Deputies and field supervisors.

Completed based on the scrutineer’s document re: additional offices for C&O.

2

Develop, test and prepare training manuals for C&O

Completed, circulated and use to train staff by GECOM.

3

Train and evaluate staff for C&O

Secretariat announced in February that 300 staff were trained and short listed.

4

Appoint staff for C&O

This was scheduled for completion on March 15

5

Brief and deploy field staff for C&O

To be completed by April 3

6

Develop update application for C&O

Completed on February 15

7

Develop statistical reporting application

Completed September 13, 2005

8

Print lists new registrants from continuous registration eligible to be electors

To be completed by March 28. The lists as at March 14 was printed and circulated.

9

Print copies of certified merged list to be used for C&O

To be completed by April 4

10

Provide banners for the identification of offices

To be completed on March 26

11

Conduct C&O

April 5 to May 3

The above summary of activities is a clear reflection that there is no major obstacle for the timely commencement of the C&O process, hence it is extremely difficult and mind boggling to understand how and why the revised proposal for the Secretariat reflects that the C&O would commence on June 13.

The Commission must seek to identify and remove inefficiencies and ineffectiveness from the Secretariat if such features are causing obstacles to meeting the August 4 deadline.

The PPP considers the revised timetable proposal a worst-case scenario document for consideration by the Commission at its next meeting. The Party expects that the Commission will take the critical decision of printing the PLE so that the C&O process can be done concurrently with the finger print matching exercise of the EOJ, which is not a legal requirement but an enhanced step to ensure a clean voters’ list.

The PPP also finds the so-called joint opposition’s statement led by the PNCR on March 24 on the revised time table to be precipitous and intended to serve its agenda to delay the holding of General Elections in Guyana and create unease in our society.

The GECOM and the Secretariat have a constitutional mandate to hold elections within the prescribed time. The PPP anticipates that the Commission will take the necessary decisions on Tuesday to ensure that elections are held within the constitutionally due timeframe.

March 25, 2006

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