High-level Caricom observer team to arrive Thursday

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The CARICOM team

Secretary General of the Caribbean Community (Caricom), Irwin LaRocque has indicated to the Chairman of the National COVID-19 Task Force of the impending arrival of the Caricom team to observe the national recount.

The Caricom delegation was invited by the Commission’s Chair, Retired Justice Singh, to take part in observing the recount of the March 2 General and Regional Elections.

The invitation was communicated to LaRocque, however, his response was communicated with the Task Force instead. Late Monday evening, the National COVID-19 Task Force (NCTF) announced that the approval was given and the team will arrive on Thursday.

LaRocque indicated to the COVID-19 Task Force that arrangements would be made for the members of the team to be tested in their respective country, using the World Health Organisation’s approved PCR COVID-19 test.

Additionally, the Task Force was informed that Caricom is requesting approval for the departure and landing of a chartered flight from Guyana to collect the team members, as well as similar arrangements for their return upon completion of the exercise.

As Caricom gears up for the recount, there seems to be no progress locally. There was no meeting on Monday by the Guyana Elections Commission. A decision on the recount date is still pending.

When the team comes, it will be their second time attempting to lend their expertise to resolve Guyana’s electoral crisis. After two declarations from Region Four’s Returning Officer, Clairmont Mingo, which lacked transparency, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo and President David Granger had agreed back in March to have Caricom oversee the recount in a deal brokered by Caricom Chair, Barbadian Prime Minister Mia Mottley.

The first high-level team that came was made up of its Chair, former Attorney General and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Dominica, Francine Baron; former Minister of Finance of Grenada, Anthony Boatswain; Senior Lecturer in the Department of Government of UWI, Cynthia Barrow-Giles; Chief Electoral Officer of Barbados, Angela Taylor; and Chief Elections Officer of Trinidad and Tobago Fern Narcis-Scope.