This is in spite of the fact that the matter has been sent to the Caribbean Court of Justice by the PPP as a challenge to the ruling by the Guyana Court of Appeal that “more votes than” means “more valid votes” in the Guyana Constitution.
In a statement this morning, the Heads of the four Missions:Ambassador of the United States of America Sarah-Ann Lynch; British High Commissioner, Greg Quinn; Canadian High Commissioner, Lilian Chatterjee, and the Ambassador of the European Union, Fernando Ponz-Canto, said they are concerned that 114 days after the elections, the people of Guyana continue to await the declaration of an election result.
According to the Diplomats, it is important that every vote, cast by every voter, be reflected in that declaration, in order to ensure that the will of the people of Guyana is respected.
They said that respect includes an election declaration of results that mirrors the order and integrity displayed by the people of Guyana, GECOM and party officials, as witnessed by the observers on elections day.
The ABCE diplomats also quoted a section of the CARICOM report on the recount that stated that nothing they witnessed, warrants a challenge to the inescapable conclusion that the recount results are acceptable and should constitute the basis of the declaration of results of the March 2, 2020 elections.”
The Diplomats said pending the outcome of the appeal to the CCJ, they trust that the Elections Commission will meet its constitutional duty to issue a Declaration on the basis of the results of the Recount as confirmed by CARICOM, to ensure the democratic choice of the people is fulfilled.
The CCJ has issued orders putting a hold to any declaration by the Elections Commission before the hearing and determination of the matter taken before it.
The statement by the ABCE Diplomats come one day after the Chief Elections Officer submitted his final report to the Chairperson and members of the Elections Commission. That report shows a victory for the APNU+AFC after more than 100,000 votes deemed to be not valid or not credible were discarded.
A number of irregularities were uncovered during the vote recount and the Chief Elections Officer said he was guided by the Appeal Court’s ruling in his compilation of his final report. That ruling spoke of valid votes.
The Guyana Court of Appeal ruled by a majority of 2-1 that “more votes cast” means “more valid votes cast” and that this should be read together with the gazetted recount order and its amended order that both refer to the determination of “credible” elections by considering the reconciliation of votes with voters’ lists, counterfoils and stubs as well as the presence of other statutory documents.
In commenting on the statement by the diplomats, Prominent Washington DC Attorney Bart Fisher, who appearing on Benschop Radio, observed that the diplomats stationed in Guyana are seeking to influence the outcome of the national recount of the March 2, 2020, General and Regional Elections.
Categorising the statement as premature, Fischer stated, “one would have thought that the signatories would have respected the process and comment on it only at the conclusion.”
According to DC Attorney, the statement is also harmful as matters pertaining to the elections are under judicial review. “That’s a prejudicial statement even before the matter has been heard by the CCJ.”
Additionally, the attorney noted the joint statement not only flies in the face of Guyana’s laws by showing disregard for the recent Appeal Court ruling but it was a narrow show of support for the next major contender in the elections.
“It is clear they were trying to prejudge this […] it is interference with the internal affairs of Guyana,” he reiterated.
Questioning the rationale for the perceived support displayed in the statement for deeming invalid votes credible, Bart conveyed, “obviously you want to count valid votes. Why would you want to count invalid votes?”
- Countries: Guyana
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