OAS to receive preliminary report on Guyana’s elections today

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Head of the OAS Observer Mission to Guyana, former Jamaican Prime Minister Bruce Golding along with other members of the OAS team in Guyana

The Permanent Council of the Organisation of American States (OAS) will today receive the preliminary report of the Head of its Electoral Observation Mission in Guyana for the still to be concluded, March 2, General and Regional Elections.

The activity—taking into account COVID-19 measures—will be hosted in a virtual session by Mission Head, former Jamaican Prime Minister, Bruce Golding.

The OAS was among the international observers to withdraw its delegation from Guyana, at the time warning that “the legitimacy of any Government that is installed in these circumstances will be open to question.”

The Mission had blasted Region Four Returning Officer, Clairmont Mingo over the process he employed during the tabulation and declaration of the March 2 results for that region.

The OAS had said the Mingo’s figures lacked transparency and are unlikely to produce a result “that is credible and is able to command public confidence.”

Region Four Returning Officer Clairmont Mingo and Chief Elections Officer Keith Lowenfield

According to the OAS in a public statement at the time, the process employed by Mingo to ascertain the results of the National and Regional Elections held on March 2, did not meet the required standard of “fairness and transparency.”

The OAS had observed, on its withdrawal, that images of the Statements of Poll (SoPs) generated by the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) on Elections Day, copies of which were published by the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) online, were never challenged by the Chief Elections Officer.

Additionally, the OAS noted that the coalition also did not challenge the authenticity of the Statements of Poll published by producing the copies in their possession.

The PPP/C’s SoPs produce a result that is vastly different from that which was declared by Mingo, a conundrum that led to the current electoral impasse, culminating with the ongoing recount exercise of votes cast.