By Tracey Khan – Drakes
[www.inewsguyana.com] – The United Kingdom envoy in Guyana is calling for the Presidential debate, regardless if there is a Prime Ministerial debate. During a meeting with members of the local media fraternity, British High Commissioner, James Gregory Quinn explained that the benefits are tremendous for both of the major political parties if the debate is undertaken.
He said it will help the key players in the upcoming May 11 general and regional elections share its plans if it is elected to office.
“This is for both Presidential Candidates to lay out to the people why they should vote for them and I know there have been questions about whether or not there should be a Prime Ministerial debate as well and I think our view is very clear, the Presidential Debate should go ahead regardless and that is huge value for everybody, both the Parties and the population in having that debate take place.”
This led him to another point of fair access to media by political parties in an effort to educate the masses on their plans which will in turn lead to the holding of free and fair elections.
“It is in everybody’s interest, since they all agree that what we want to see is a free and fair election…and one of the ways in which you could do that is to ensure everybody gets the information…and one way to do that is equal access to media,” the UK High Commissioner said.
The major priority of the current UK High Commissioner is the peaceful conduct of the upcoming elections and the transition process.
“The fundamental thing for us here is to ensure the elections are free, fair transparent and accurately represent the views of the electorate in this country. So at the end of the day people can stand up and feel that they have had the opportunity to cast their vote for the person they wanted to vote for, without any hindrance.”
Meanwhile, the Media Monitoring Unit (MMU) and Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) came in for high commendations from the newly appointed High Commissioner.
“I have every faith in GECOM to deliver what they are meant to deliver, despite the pressures that they are under and the difficulties that they face and both the MMU and GECOM are criticized by both sides so you could argue that it’s a good sign.”