GECOM must explain the over 100,000 invalid ballots- Stanley Ming
—shows CEO final report as factual
DPI, Guyana, Sunday, June 28, 2020
Local businessman Stanley Ming said the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) will have to explain how 100,000 invalid ballots got into boxes at the March 2, 2020, General and Regional elections, since the report by Chief Elections Officer (CEO) Keith Lowenfield represents the reality of Guyana’s voting population.
Ming provided an analysis of the 2020 elections, in the face of allegations of widespread electoral fraud committed by the opposition People’s Progressive Party.
The gazetted national vote recount of the March 2 polls undertaken by GECOM last month, unearthed almost 7000 incidences of fraud, affecting some 200,000 votes. The cases ranged from dead to migrant voters and stuffed ballot boxes to missing statutory documents for the reconciliation of ballots.
The evidence of fraud was reported by the CEO in his report to the commission which had incorporated the Observation Reports from the 2,339 ballot boxes.
His final report guided by the Court of Appeal and which contained “more valid votes cast” showed the APNU+AFC Coalition winning the elections with a total 171,825 valid votes. The PPP follows with 166,343 votes, while the joined list of A New United Guyana, the Liberty and Justice Party and The New Movement together gained some 3, 348 valid votes.
Prior to the March 2, elections the government had continuously expressed concerns that the process was moving ahead with a bloated Official List of Electors (OLE). The national recount had realised those fears when it was discovered that thousands of deceased and migrated person were listed as having voted in the elections.
In his analysis, Ming cited Guyana’s census data which showed the country’s population in 1970, 1980, 1990, 2000, and 2012 as being 745,000 751,000, 723, 000, 751,000 and 747,000 respectively. This he said gives an average of 743,000 during that period.
Using an average of 750,000 between 2012 and 2020, Ming showed that with children below the age of 18 listed at 250,000, the number of persons eligible to vote and resident in Guyana should be at 500,000. An accurate number of persons that should have been on the OLE for the elections in 2011, 2015, and 2020 is approx 500,000 maximum.
With an average 72 percent turnout of the elections in 2006, 2011 and 2015, the turnout in 2020 should have been approximately 360,000 if the OLE was 500,000.
He showed that before the 2015 elections, GECOM had projected the OLE to be 475,496 and the turnout 354,317. However, the actual was 570,787 for the OLE and 416,055 turnouts, resulting in 62,000 more voters than 2011. This he said was “virtually impossible.”
“It is fair to state categorically, that for the 2020 and any future elections within another cycle, an accurate OLE of persons residing in Guyana cannot exceed 500,000 persons and the turnout cannot exceed 360,000.”
Ming said the claimed valid votes cast in the 2020 elections totalling 460,295, undoubtedly includes approximately 100,000 ballots, which should not be included in a credible result.
According to him, GECOM’s discard of 115,787 invalid votes leaves 347,509 votes cast and 344,508 valid votes which is what a correct tally should be for the 2020 elections.
“How 100,000 invalid ballots got into the boxes and who placed them there is a matter that GECOM and the three-card teams have to explain to the people of Guyana,” Ming said.