Claims and Objections period vital for clean list – GECOM’s CEO

─ says current list of electors expires after April 30, 2019

─ obligation of GECOM is not only to hold elections on time but to also execute a process of top-quality

─ there was a consensus within the commission two weeks ago, that an election by March 19 is hardly possible; however, some of the commissioners’ position changed – Commissioner Alexander

DPI, Guyana, Tuesday, February 5, 2019

With the Guyana Elections Commission announcing its readiness for General and Regional Elections no sooner than July of this year, the election body may have to carry out a Claims and Objections exercise to “clean the list of electors.”

GECOM’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Keith Lowenfield told the media today that the life of the current list of electors will expire on the last day of April this year. According to Lowenfield, if elections are not held before that date, the secretariat will have to proceed with the production of a new official list of electors.

“Lists have life date. It is the life of the list. A list is never clean, every electoral list has someone who is deceased, so it is really saying to you what is cleanliness? Is it where all the listed persons there are alive and well? If one person there is deceased, then the cleanliness [of the list] comes into question,” the CEO told journalists minutes after a meeting today.

According to the CEO, one of the mandates of GECOM is to always be in a state of readiness for elections and registration. Each of these activities, however, must be carried out, at the order of the commission itself.

He said the production of any new list will have to be guided by the commission and that process can be carried out through a Claims and Objection period.

Also speaking to the media, Commissioner Vincent Alexander said the obligation of GECOM is not only to hold elections on time but to also execute a process of top-quality.

“To me, that quality of election requires house-to-house registration because the list is bloated. This is something we all recognise, we now have the finance to correct it, and we should use the monies to correct it.

His recommendation is that house-to-house registration be carried out, so that “elections would be held with a perfect a list as possible”.

According to Alexander, there was a consensus within the commission two weeks ago, that an election by March 19 is hardly possible. He said it is obvious that some of the commissioners’ position changed after they were given directives.

Alexis Rodney.

Images: Marceano Narine.

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