Ramkarran says 15-day deadline to announce elections results “not mandatory”

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ANUG’s Presidential Candidate Ralph Ramkarran

The 15-day deadline referenced in the Representation of the People Act, within which the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) must announce results for a General and Regional Elections is directory and not mandatory.

As such, the “swearing-in of the President after the 15-day deadline will attract no legal consequences.”

This is according to former Speaker of the National Assembly, Senior Counsel (SC), Ralph Ramkarran.

He gave his views over the weekend in a public social media platform and argued that the 15-day deadline is clearly “directory” and not “mandatory.”

These are interpretations by courts of the effect of timelines when provided for in legislation, according to Ramkarran.

The Presidential Candidate for the recently formed A New and United Guyana (ANUG) qualified his position further, saying when a timeline is “directory,” no consequences arise if it is violated.

General and Regional Elections were held on March 2, 2020, which means GECOM has until tomorrow, to give a final declaration of the total results.

With a nationwide recount with specific focus on Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica), GECOM would likely miss the 15-day deadline, which Ramkarran has since dismissed as directory and not mandatory.

Speaking to the controversies surrounding the counting of the votes for Region Four, Ramkarran welcomed the initiative by President David Granger and Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo, to have a recount.

According to ANUG’s Presidential Candidate, “this agreement is of tremendous importance to Guyana because it may help to resolve the impasse over the election results, the fabrication of which threatens to plunge Guyana once again into undemocratic rule and international sanctions.”