In preparation for the March 2, 2020 General and Regional Elections, Government has announced that a number of international observers have been approved to ensure that the elections are free, fair and credible.
This disclosure was made by Director-General of the Ministry of the Presidency, Joseph Harmon, at his post-Cabinet press briefing on Thursday.
“There are some applications that have been made to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and those applications have been approved and, therefore, would have been sent to the Elections Commission. Most of what I can say is that I am aware of right now the Carter Center, the OAS (Organisation of American States), the Commonwealth Secretariat and some others. These are international organisations that have been observing elections from time immemorial. Those applications that have gone to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs have been approved,” Harmon said.
Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) Chair Retired Justice Claudette Singh recently said that the Commission welcomes the international observers, noting that they are critical to the process.
Earlier, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo contended at previous press conferences that GECOM had declined help from organisations like the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
After the Opposition Leader’s contention, it was announced that GECOM would be benefiting from the technical expertise of retired Chief Electoral Officer of Canada’s elections body, Jean-Pierre Kingsley.
His appointment is being funded by the Canadian Government. According to GECOM’s Public Relations Officer, Yolanda Ward, the Canadian High Commission here had offered the elections body technical assistance in the form of providing an expert and the seven-member Elections Commission had accepted the offer, which resulted in the former Canadian Electoral Officer being appointed.
Meanwhile, General Secretary of the People’s Progressive Party, Bharrat Jagdeo, on Thursday said that the international community will be deeply involved in providing oversight during the electoral period.
The Carter Center along with other international agencies were invited via a letter from the caretaker coalition administration to oversee the operations after calls from the parliamentary opposition. They are expected to observe the events leading up to the polls and during Election Day itself.
“We are working assiduously and we’re covering every base to ensure that the elections are transparent. I know for a fact that the international community is heavily engaged in the process to ensure free and fair elections in Guyana…The Government has finally relented and issued the letter of invitation to the European Union, to the Carter Center and to some other organisations to observe the elections,” Jagdeo posited.
We're sorry. You must be signed in to continue.