Appeal Court to rule on dismissed elections petition case on Dec 21

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The Appeal Court led by Chancellor Yonette Cummings-Edwards will on December 21, 2021, make a decision in an appeal filed by the APNU/AFC Opposition to have the election petition that was dismissed to be reinstated.

The Opposition Coalition, through Attorney Roysdale Forde, had filed an appeal challenging Chief Justice Roxane George’s decision to throw out one of the party’s election’s petitions, and on Friday, the case was called before Justice Cummings-Edwards, Justice Rishi Persaud and Justice Dawn Gregory-Barnes.

In the last case, Attorney Roysdale Forde had asked the court for more time to make further submissions on the court’s jurisdiction, and those submissions were made on Friday.

However, during the court proceedings, Trinidadian Senior Counsel Douglas Mendes, who is representing the PPP/C in the case, asked the court to disregard the submissions, on the grounds that Forde did not address the question of the Full Court’s jurisdiction.

Mendes in his objection claimed that Forde, through his submissions, presented his arguments on the Appeal Court’s jurisdiction.

“…You had said that you would ignore submissions that didn’t follow your instructions… there is nothing further to submit to you this morning…. the parties would have first exchanged submissions on the jurisdiction on the full court which we all did,” Mendes posited.

With this being said, Mendes asked the Chancellor to set the adjournment date for a decision to be made, since the case was being prolonged.

The coalition had filed two petitions challenging the results of the March 2, 2020 General and Regional Elections. However, Chief Justice Roxane George struck down the election petitions.

In election petition 99p2020, the CJ found that former President David Granger and leader of the APNU/AFC List of Candidates and named as the second respondent in the case was not properly served according to the rules outlined in the National Assembly Validity of Elections Act.

She also found that Granger is a necessary and proper party in the proceedings since the list he represents stands to be affected. As a consequence of the late service, Petition 99 – filed by Monica Thomas and Brennan Nurse – was declared a nullity and dismissed.

Following this decision, Attorney General and Legal Affairs Minister, Anil Nandlall had filed a motion asking the Guyana Court of Appeal to dismiss the appeal.