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GUYANA | OAS Not happy with the Guyana court challenges, wants PPP declared election winner

  • Written by Calvin G Brown - wiredja.com
  • Published in Politics
Chair of the OAS Observer Team, Orette Bruce Golding Chair of the OAS Observer Team, Orette Bruce Golding
WASHINGTON DC,  June 23, 2020 - The Organization of American States seems not to be happy with the court challenges to the Guyana election process, and that in a true democracy, it is one of the luxuries and benefits of the democratic process.  

Noting that “this election has gone on long enough,” the OAS in a statement Tuesday afternoon, says “there is a fine line between the right to redress and the use of the courts to stall the electoral process.”

The OAS statement declared that “the process in Guyana must be brought to an end, based on the results of the national recount, and with respect for the will of the majority of the electorate.”

During one of the challenges, the OAS in a statement “called on the current administration of Guyana to begin the process of transition, which will allow the legitimately elected government to take its place.”

 

“Elections are held to determine the will of the people and once the people’s wishes are clearly stated they must be upheld – not only in instances where they favour the incumbent. In this case, the results published in the report of the Chief Elections Officer himself make it clear that the opposition PPP/C has won the favour of the majority of Guyana’s eligible voters. Their will must be respected.”

 

The OAS, which professes an adherence to democratic ideals, refused to take into consideration that the recount process clearly proved that tens of thousands of votes could not be deemed as credible or valid having been affected by instances of fraud, discrepancies and anomalies.

There were numerous instances of voter impersonation (dead persons and migrated persons registered as having voted), missing ballots, unstamped ballots, missing poll books, missing oaths of identity and unsigned oaths of identity, more ballots that electors found in ballot boxes among other grave issues.

Elections with proven illegitimate and ‘defective’ votes bring into question the credibility of those votes and cannot be foisted upon the people of Guyana. Illegitimate votes, cannot be included in the consideration of ‘valid votes’ to determine a credible outcome.

According to the OAS, it has accompanied the March 2 General and Regional elections in Guyana through all of its stages, including the national recount in Georgetown from May 6 to June 8, 2020.

The OAS said its observers were present for the determination and tabulation of the total valid votes cast in each Region – totals that were subsequently confirmed by the Chief Elections Officer and submitted to the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM).

The OAS  says its General Secretariat expects that anyone who wishes to challenge the validity of any of these votes should do so through an election petition filed in the High Court, after GECOM declares the election result based on the recount data.

Guyana’s 2020 elections have been reviewed repeatedly and extensively by both national and regional courts. While the OAS General Secretariat advocates for the right of all citizens to access electoral justice, there is a fine line between the right to redress and the use of the courts to stall the electoral process.

It is undeniable that this election has gone on long enough. The process in Guyana must be brought to an end, based on the results of the national recount, and with respect for the will of the majority of the electorate.

The OAS says it remains committed to the strengthening of democracy in Guyana, and it was hoping for a just and fair conclusion of the current process.

  • Countries: Guyana