By Tracey Khan – Drakes
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Cabinet has thrown out a challenge to the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) to prodivde evidence of its readiness for the hosting of Local Government and General Elections.
Cabinet Secretary, Dr. Roger Luncheon at his post cabinet press briefing called on GECOM to “put their money where their mouth is”.
He told reporters it is only fair that the Commission demonstrates to all stakeholders’ evidence of its real state of readiness instead of “mere talks.”
Dr. Luncheon even questioned the name of the elections body asking: “Is it GECOM or GE-GONE?”
GECOM’s Chairman, Dr Steve Surujbally on July 14 stated that the Commission “fully prepared and committed to move formally into an election mode with immediacy, if and when the Commission is mandated to conduct Local Government Elections.”
In this regard, the Cabinet Secretary said there seems to be a pull by GECOM to set a date for the holding of elections which would marginalize the President’s constitutional role to set a date, noting that the move can be viewed as sinister.
According to Dr Luncheon, Cabinet’s contention remains that prior to the 1992 period, considerable energy and time are now spent on this matter and fear has arisen that there are moves to revert backwards. This he noted can be viewed as a constitutional crisis.
“GECOM should provide a timely and more exhausted status report about its readiness and preparatory state on local and general elections,” Dr Luncheon said.
He emphasized that the Guyanese people and Cabinet have heard GECOM’s position on its state of readiness, however proof is needed.
“Let us put our money where our mouth is, the Chairman’s word should be matched by evidence.”
When asked if he believes the AFC’s threats of a no confidence motion and GECOM’s status are related, Dr Luncheon said this theory should be ignored until there is concrete evidence of such.
If the Alliance for Change (AFC) receives support from A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) to pass the no confidence motion in the National Assembly, then Government would be forced to set a date for the holding of General elections three months after.