CCJ to give consequential declarations and orders in two sets of cases from Guyana

DPI, Guyana, Friday, July 12, 2019

The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) will give consequential declarations and orders in two sets of cases from Guyana, today. The cases have to do with the appointment of the Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) and the December 21, 2018 vote which the court ruled on June 18 was validly passed in the National Assembly.

Below is the timeline of the event that preceded this court hearing.

Timeline of the December 21, 2018 vote:

– November 15, 2018 – The motion was filed in the National Assembly.

– December 21. – The motion was passed in the National Assembly.

– December 22. – Charrandass Persaud removed as a parliamentarian.

– December 27. – H E President David Granger addressed the nation.

– December 31. – Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, the Honourable Basil Williams SC., wrote to the Speaker of the National Assembly, Dr. the Honourable Barton Scotland requesting that ruling be reversed.

– January 3, 2019 – Barbara Pilgrim replaced Charandass Persaud as Member of Parliament in National Assembly.

– Speaker of the National Assembly, Dr. the Honourable Barton Scotland advised that matter be settled in court.

– January 4. – Private citizen, Compton Reid filed a motion in the High Court to challenge the ruling.

– January 7. – The government also filed a motion challenging the ruling.

– January 8. – Attorney Christopher Ram filed a motion for the court ruling to be upheld.

– January 9. – H E President David Granger and Opposition Leader, the Honourable Bharrat Jagdeo met to discuss the way forward following the Dec. 21, 2018 vote.

– January 10. – A joint statement was issued on January 9 following the meeting between the two sides.

– January 15. – Chief Justice (ag), Roxane George began hearing cases relating to the Dec. 21, 2018 vote.

– January 31. – Chief Justice (ag), Roxane George upheld the Dec. 21, 2018 vote was validly passed.

– February 5. – Government filed for a petition to reverse the ruling of the acting Chief Justice, in Court of Appeal

– February 7. – Citizens protested across Guyana calling for House-to-House Registration

– March 6. – H E President David Granger and Opposition Leader, the Honourable Bharrat Jagdeo met again to discuss GECOM’s preparedness for elections.

– March 8. – H E President David Granger met with GECOM Commissioners.

– March 22. – Court of Appeal made its ruling that the Dec. 21, 2018 vote was not validly passed.

– March 26. – Opposition filed pleadings with Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) to throw out the ruling of the Court of Appeal.

– March 29. – Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) sets no-confidence motion hearing for May 10.

– April 24. – Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) pretrial session began.

– May 9. – Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) heard oral submissions in cases presented regarding the Dec. 21, 2018 vote.

– May 10. – Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) oral submissions continued and concluded.

– June 18. – Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) ruled the vote was validly passed in the National Assembly and the appointment of GECOM Chair was ‘flawed’.

– CCJ recommended that the president and opposition communicate in ‘good faith’.

– CCJ invited both sides to present further submissions on June 24, on how the issue should be rectified.

– H E President David Granger addressed the nation, reiterating his commitment to respecting the ruling.

– June 20. – H E President David Granger invited the Opposition Leader, the Honourable Bharrat Jagdeo to meet and discuss the appointment of GECOM chair.

– June 21. – Government staged protest for House-to-House Registration.

– Jun. 24 – GECOM Chair (ret’d) Justice James demitted office, rendering the position vacant.

– Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) held a hearing to determine whether there was consensus on the way forward but, as there was no consensus, the CCJ then ordered the attorneys in both cases to make written submissions on July 1.

– June 25. – Opposition Leader, Hon. Bharrat Jagdeo accepted H E President David Granger’s invitation to meet.

– June 28. – H E President David Granger acknowledged Opposition Leader, the Honourable Bharrat Jagdeo’s acceptance of invitation.

– July 3. – H E President David Granger sets meeting with Opposition Leader, the Honourable Bharrat Jagdeo for July 4, 2019.

– July 4. – H E President David Granger and Opposition Leader, the Honourable Bharrat Jagdeo met for the first time since CCJ’s ruling.

– July 8. – Representatives for the President and the Opposition met to “hammer out” the shortlisting of names for the selection of GECOM chair.

– July 9. – Representatives for the President and the Opposition continued meeting to discuss nominations for GECOM chair.

– July 11. – Representatives for the President and the Opposition meet for 3rd time to discuss nominations for GECOM chair.

– H E President David Granger and Opposition Leader, Hon. Bharrat Jagdeo to now consider from a list of 13 nominees for position of GECOM chair.

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