The following is an opinion piece by Dr Tara Singh
Where else in this world will elections that cover less than ½ million voters take more than 120 days to have a final declaration being made of the winner? Where else in the world will these elections produce 6 different results (original figures based on SOPs, Mingo’s figures of March 5th, Mingo’s figures of March13th, Recount figures of June 8, Lowenfield figures of June 13 and Lowenfield figures of June 23rd)? Where else in this world will a de facto government fail to concede defeat and step down, despite all the pressures exerted by local stakeholders and the international community?
Where else in the world will a government advance an astonishing defense in support of open fraud perpetrated by its operatives at the Elections Commission Secretariat? Where else in the world will a country be regarded as a pariah state? And where else in the world will a governing party launch a vitriolic campaign against western governments, CARICOM, and others? Where else but Guyana!
Since the recount figures (SORs) have replaced the original figures (based on SOPs), comparisons will be made with the recount figures. The SORs (Recount) figures were 3,374 votes more than the SOPs (an increase of 0.7% that works out to an average of 1.44 votes per polling station). The main reason for the increase was that some of the rejected/discarded votes were re-classified as valid and added to the valid votes count. This difference however is statistically insignificant.
The data of the recount were duly certified by GECOM and all the political parties, except the APNU-AFC. The recount process was deemed credible and transparent. The report by the CARICOM High Level Mission was accepted as credible by all the political parties (except the APNU-AFC), the Observer teams of AMCHAM, European Union, the Organization of American States, and others. Since the report was publicized, several other national and international organizations as well as the western diplomatic community have embraced the CARICOM report and indicate that it constitutes the basis for a declaration of the elections’ results. The PPPC won the elections by 15, 416 votes.
With the release of the CARICOM report, there has been a concerted campaign by elements within the APNU-AFC to tarnish the authenticity of the report and to attack the Chair of CARICOM as well as senior diplomats who stand up in defense of democracy. Barbados Prime Minister and CARICOM Chair, Mia Mottley dismisses easily those allegations; “the truth hurts.”
David Granger said publicly prior to the recount that CARICOM was the most legitimate “interlocutor” to oversee the recount process, against the background that he debarred the Carter Center from observing the recount. Speaking on defense of democracy is not interference. Rather it’s good diplomacy.
The US Senate, the Organization of American States (OAS), the Mandella Elders’ Group, among others, including the local Private Sector Commission (PSC) have called upon the Granger regime to concede defeat and make way for a transition to the new government. The Chair of Senate Foreign Relations Committee Marco Rubio states: ”We share in the frustration expressed by the Caribbean Community, the OAS, and other international stakeholders, and call upon the Guyana authorities to issue an official elections declaration that reflects the results of the March 2nd elections which were confirmed in the official recount by the CARICOM’s observation team.”
Of note, there is a post on FB attributed to PNCR’s James Bond that indicates that the APNU-AFC lost more votes than the PPPC as a result of Lowenfield’s hatchet job. Apart from the fact that the APNU-AFC has stopped shouting that “every vote must count” and has not rebelled over Lowenfield’s disenfranchisement of thousands of their voters, they have moved to intensify their misinformation and propaganda campaign and claiming victory that they know is contrived. They fill social and other media outlets with fake news. The APNU-AFC have learnt, as part of their culture of “lies, deception, venality and rigging, “that if they push forth a lie continuously, it will take on the life of a truth. They excel at this craft.
Clairmont Mingo of Ashmin’s notoriety, had produced fictitious figures in his March 5th declaration that allowed the APNU-AFC 7,692 more votes nationally than the PPPC. In his second declaration of March 13th, his fraudulent figures allowed APNU-AFC a lead of 7,389 votes nationally over the PPPC. But if anyone thinks that those figures represent an orchestrated and transparent rigging of an unprecedented scale, then this would be no match for the “mother of all rigging” perpetrated by his boss, the GECOM’s Chief Elections Officer Keith Lowenfield.
In Lowenfield’s June 13th Observation Report he gave the APNU-AFC a massive lead of 68,383 votes over the PPPC, and in the process disenfranchised 275,092 or 60% of voters (92,910 were APNU-AFC voters, 176,709 were PPPC voters, and 5,473 were Other Parties voters).
In Lowenfield’s report of June 23rd to the GECOM Chair, he performed another mathematical somersault. But the APNU-AFC lead this time was reduced to 5,482 votes. Notwithstanding that he still disenfranchised 115,844 or 25% of voters (46,095 were APNU-AFC voters, 66,993 were PPPC voters, and 2,756 were other parties’ voters). Lowenfield’s statistical gymnastics have created a tremendous assault upon decent Guyanese’ dignity and intelligence!
I hope that the Guyanese people are smart enough not to accept this level of Lowenfield’s naked, brutal and vicious fraud. Should they allow this to happen, the negative message would be stinging upon the behavior of the younger generation in particular. “When you can’t get something the legal way, it’s ok to get it through the illegal way via fraud, deception or lies.” This is a dangerous precedent not only for Guyana but also for CARICOM and The Commonwealth. There is only one truth about the 2020 elections’ results: that is, the PPPC is the winner.