OAS Permanent Council to discuss Guyana’s political impasse on July 21

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Luis Almagro

The Permanent Council of the Organisation of American States (OAS) will meet on July 21 regarding the ongoing political crisis in Guyana where the incumbent APNU/AFC Government is refusing to make way for a smooth transition of power even though a national recount has confirmed that it has been defeated at the March 2, polls.

In a brief statement on Friday, the OAS confirmed that the Permanent Council will hold the virtual special meeting “to consider the state of the electoral process in Guyana”, at the request of the Secretary General, Luis Almagro.

The Permanent Council is one of the two main political bodies of the OAS, the other being the General Assembly. The Permanent Council keeps vigilance over the maintenance of friendly relations among the member states and, for that purpose, effectively assists them in the peaceful settlement of their disputes.

The national recount has shown that the Irfaan Ali-led PPP/C has won the elections with 233,336 votes. But caretaker President David Granger and a few of his top aides, with the help of elements within the electoral machinery, are refusing to give up power.

The OAS, in a statement earlier this week, made it clear that “the only democratic solution for Guyana at this time is respect for the results of the national recount. No other figures – neither those prepared prior to the recount, nor those recently invalidated by the Caribbean Court of Justice, nor any others that may be unilaterally devised by the Chief Elections Officer – can have any place in the final determination of results. A new electoral process is also an unacceptable solution.”

The OAS had also reminded that “the peoples of the Americas have a right to democracy and their governments have an obligation to promote and defend it.”