Coalition maintains valid votes only for declaration
– open to dialogue with political parties, stakeholders
DPI, Guyana, Wednesday July 21, 2020
The APNU+AFC Coalition says it remains committed to the rule of law, as it awaits the completion of the ongoing judicial processes and the final declaration of results of the valid votes by the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM).
Coalition co-campaign manager Joseph Harmon today said the delays in the declaration of results were caused, in part, by several appeals made following the March 2 elections, to the Supreme Court of Judicature, the Court of Appeal of Guyana and the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) where interpretations of electoral and other laws were sought to resolve problems arising from the elections.
In a televised statement, the Coalition executive said the APNU+AFC is committed to a lawful and credible declaration of results based on valid votes.
The Coalition, Harmon said has taken note of the ruling of Chief Justice Roxane George on July 20, which has empowered the Guyana election Commission to use votes counted in the national vote recount to determine the winner of the March 2 polls.
He noted that the Coalition has always respected the judicial process, however that process is incomplete since the High Court decision has been appealed in the Appellate Court.
“Such an appeal is lawful, proper and guaranteed under the Constitution of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, our supreme law. The Coalition will await the outcome of the appeal,” Harmon stated.
He said the Coalition has to ensure that fraudulent votes cannot be factored in to represent the will of the electorate.
“Any attempt to include fraudulent votes in a ‘Declaration’ will constitute a violation of the Constitution and the fundamental principles of democracy. We maintain that the Elections Commission can only make a ‘Declaration’ based on valid votes.”
He reminded of massive irregularities and extensive fraud unearthed during the national vote recount, emphasising that these cannot be “foisted on the Guyanese people to contrive an outcome that betrays the will of the electorate.”
Harmon said the Coalition is prepared to act responsibly to bring a resolution to the ongoing political situation and remains open to dialogue with other political parties and stakeholders on the way forward for the country.
The statement comes a day after the government addressed the Organisation of American States (OAS) Permanent Council, presenting its position on the current political impasse.
The government through its Attorney General Basil Williams, SC and Foreign Affairs Minister Dr. Karen Cummings relayed that Guyana has always been bounded by its constitution and remain committed to the rule of law and the decisions of the judiciary and the elections commission.
Harmon called on “all Guyanese to remain calm and peaceful as we await a credible and legitimate outcome.”