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GUYANA | Guyana Gov't arrest more GECOM election officials

  • Written by Wiredja.com- Calvin G. Brown
  • Published in Justice
Featured Deputy Chief Election Officer of the Guyana Elections Commission, GECOM, Ms. Roxanne Prince Myers Deputy Chief Election Officer of the Guyana Elections Commission, GECOM, Ms. Roxanne Prince Myers
GEORGETOWN, Guyana, October 6, 2020 – As Guyana's Peoples Progressive Party (PPP) government continues to intimidate employees of the Guyana Elections Commission, the Deputy Chief Election Officer Ms. Roxanne Prince Myers will spend the night trying to rest on the cold ground of the Beterverwaghting Police station, East Coast Demerara.

This, after she refused to answer questions relating to the conduct of the general elections that may form part of the election petition case filed by the APNU/AFC Coalition, and scheduled to be argued before the Guyana Supreme Court.

Deputy Chief Election Officer Roxanne Myers was taken into Police custody on Tuesday morning and placed in jail after refusing to answer questions about statements of poll in relation to the March 2, 2020 elections.

C.A.Nigel Hughes 350x350Attorney-at-Law, Nigel Hughes, (left) who accompanied her to the police station, says she was arrested for obstruction of a police investigation because she exercised her right to silence. She has been refused bail.

Mr. Hughes said the only charge placed on the Deputy Chief Elections Officer is obstruction of justice because of her decision to exercise her right not to answer any questions posed to her in relation to the elections.

In the past weeks, the Guyana Police Force has been taking a number of senior GECOM officials into custody to question them about matters concerning the elections and allegations of electoral fraud.

These include two other staff members as well as the Chairman of the People’s National Congress Reform Volda Lawrence who have so far been charged with various offences related to the polls.

The police recently recommended charges against the Chief Election Officer Keith Lowenfield, who is already facing private criminal charges in relation to the same election probe. He had also refused to give any statement to the police in the matter.

Mr. Hughes pointed out that "the arrest of Mr. Lowenfield and the institution of new criminal charge by the State are clearly intended to have an impact on any testimony which Mr. Lowenfield may provide in the Election petition cases."

The attorney intimated that "the unambiguous intention is to have [Lowenfield] classified as a tainted witness at the time of any possible testimony in the conduct of the Election Petition cases."

The private charges were filed by political representatives of the People’s Progressive Party and the New Movement party. The DPP has taken over the case.

Investigators said Mr. Lowenfield’s arrest was part of “continuing” investigations into alleged electoral fraud, and is facing criminal charges for alleged misconduct in public office and alleged fraud.

Charges have also been filed against the Returning Officer for Region Four Clairmont Mingo.

The Jamaica Daily Gleaner last week warned the Guyana government that using the law to settle political scores is a tactic often employed by authoritarian governments and their leaders, which we hope is not what is happening in Guyana. It has no place in liberal democracy.”

“we perceive something more than slightly mephitic in current events in Georgetown. President Irfaan Ali must be careful that it does not evolve into something far more malodorous and politically uncontainable,” the Gleaner warned.

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  • Countries: Guyana