President to meet with GECOM, Opposition Leader on elections 

Georgetown, Guyana – (February 26, 2019) President David Granger has written to the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) and the Leader of the Opposition, Mr. Bharrat Jagdeo for separate consultations to be held on the issue of General and Regional Elections.

Minister of State, Mr. Joseph Harmon, in an invited comment said that the President’s actions are as a result of a letter he received from Chairman of GECOM, Justice (Ret’d) James Patterson.

“The President, having received that letter, responded to the Chairman of the GECOM indicating to the Commission that he noted the concerns, which were raised in the letter and he has asked that the Commission stands ready to commence a consultation with him on the operational readiness of the Elections Commission to deliver a credible election. He noted of course, their concerns that there was not enough or any appropriation made in the 2019 Budget for anything other than house to house registration and that the Elections Commission was going to proceed with their programme of house to house registration. So that is the context of the exchange of letters between GECOM and the President,” he said.

Meanwhile, Minister Harmon said that based on the issues raised by the letter sent by GECOM’s Chairman, President Granger has asked to meet with the Leader of the Opposition. On the agenda for that meeting are the National Assembly’s constitutional role in the present situation and GECOM’s readiness and requirement for funding to enable it to conduct General and Regional Elections.

“The President has always kept himself open and available to consult with the Leader of the Opposition on matters of national interest. Now based on that letter that the Elections Commission sent to him, the President felt that it was necessary to consult with the Leader of the Opposition and so he, in fact, instructed me to write the Leader of the Opposition, which I did today, and I pointed out that the President was inviting [him] to a consultation on the March 6, 2019 at 11: 00 hrs at the Ministry of the Presidency,” the Minister of State said.