…Granger hedges, says he “will accept Chairwoman’s declaration”
With the national elections recount on its last lap, it has already set the truth free according to People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Presidential Candidate, Dr Irfaan Ali.
In a live virtual briefing on Saturday, Dr Ali reiterated his party’s commitment to accepting the results from the recount of the votes cast at the March 2 elections.
“The recount has shown nothing different from what we shared with the Guyanese people. The recount has set the truth free. The recount has clarified in the minds of many Guyanese what we would have shared with them since March 4. It is time for us to move forward. It is time for us to embrace the results of these elections and build a Guyana we will all love,” the PPP/C Presidential Candidate said.
“I want to assure Guyanese that as we close up on this recount, the PPP has been consistent in saying that we will honour the results of a credible recount,” he added.
According to Ali, the recount has thus far confirmed what the PPP/C has been saying all along, that is, it won the elections held more than three months ago. He pointed out that the evidence has been out there since March when the party published the Statements of Poll (SoPs) from the various Polling Stations to show the votes it garnered from the elections.
He went on to note that the voice and will of Guyanese must be respected, adding that his party is ready to do this and act in the best interest of Guyana and its people.
“I want to assure as your next President and the next Government that [my] Government is committed to constitutional reform and meaningful constitutional reform, ensuring that all Guyanese and all segment of the population are consulted and included in the process of constitutional reform. But much more than this, we have learned so much from this period. Electoral reforms that are needed, restructuring of the Elections Commission – these are all things that must occupy the agenda of all of us collectively, not only the Government or the People’s Progressive Party/Civic,” Ali contended.
To this end, the PPP/C Presidential Candidate further posited that he looks forward to a “great partnership” among all political parties, civil society and all citizens of Guyana in ensuring that all these key issues are addressed.
“Reconciliation is important, important for us to get together, important for us to understand that Guyana belongs to all of us and that as [a] Government, we [will] have a responsibility not only to the supporters of the People’s Progressive Party/Civic but to all Guyanese regardless of who you supported. These are commitments we made throughout the campaign and we are surely going to stick by those commitments,” Ali assured.
With the National Recount nearing completion, calls have been mounting for the parties to accept the results from the recount and a smooth transition of Government so that Guyana can move on from this prolonged electoral process.
However, earlier this week the APNU/AFC coalition had stated that any results emanating from the recount cannot be considered credible because of the “high incidence of fraud”, which includes unstamped ballots, deceased and migrant voters and missing poll books.
In fact, caretaker President David Granger in an address to the nation on Saturday stated that “those irregularities appear to have been committed intentionally, not accidentally, and demonstrate a pattern of manipulation of the electoral process.”
Nevertheless, as both domestic and international pressure continues to mount, he committed to abide by the declaration of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), which he reaffirmed is an independent body.
“I had committed, on 30th April, that I shall accept the declaration of the results by the Elections Commission, which will allow for a democratically elected Government to be sworn-in to office. I am committed to uphold the Constitution and the rule of law. I respect the integrity and autonomous nature of the Elections Commission. I will abide by the declarations of the Elections Commission as I have abided by the rulings of the court,” the caretaker President stated.
Granger further lauded the diligence and persistence of the GECOM Chair, (ret’d) Justice Claudette Singh, who he said continues to perform her duties under the Constitution admirably, demonstrated respect for the rulings of the Court and has facilitated Caricom’s observation role in the recount process in order to assure everyone of the credibility of the elections.
“The Commission must be allowed to perform its functions in accordance with the Constitution. I encourage everyone to await the completion of the four stages – the current recount, the reports of the Chief Elections Officer and the Caricom observers, the review by the Elections Commission and the declaration of the final results by the Chairman of the Commission,” he contended.