SOR to be tabulated after completion of each district – GECOM confirms

Commission meets to address issues

DPI, Guyana, Thursday, May 7, 2020

The Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) is currently meeting to iron out some issues arising from the ongoing national recount of the March 2, General and Regional Elections at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre.

Among these are reports of a “private meeting” between Information Technology (IT) staff at the commission and members of the PPP this morning, something, government agents said should not be happening and an allegation that the name of a deceased person was used in March 2 polls.

The Commission is also meeting to deliberate on a request by opposition parties for the tabulation of the Statements of Recount (SOR’s) to commence at this time.

GECOM’s Public Relations Officer (PRO) Yolanda Ward said as it stands the tabulation of the SORs will take place after the recount of all ballots from each region.

She pointed to the Recount Order which was gazetted on Monday, which speaks to the tabulation occurring after all ballots of a region is completed.

The PRO reminded that the Order is a legal document, and any changes made to it will also have to be gazetted.

“What is supposed to happen is the simultaneous process during that exercise, a screen will project the SOR and another screen with an EXCEL file that will do the actual inputting and tabulation of the (SOR),” she explained to media operatives this afternoon.

Ward said party agents were assigned to the tabulation exercise and will be present during the process.  She told the media that some party agents on Wednesday requested from the Chair that the process commence.

The Chair had also approved the IT team giving party agents a demonstration of how the process will go on Wednesday.

“This is not GECOM asking for a dry run, it is a case where the agents because they are seated there, requested of the Chair to see what the process entails for the tabulation, and she provided that clearance for that to be done,” she explained

At the time of the interview, Ward reported that agents had completed the counting of 14 ballot boxes from the four regions under review.

She reminded that process is not necessarily smooth, as there remain continuous objections and queries by all parties involved. She noted that the number of the ballots in the boxes varies, pointing out too that a small number of ballots in a box, does not equate to a swift completion.

“There is really no time span that we can really anticipate as to when those will be completed,” she affirmed.