[www.inewsguyana.com] – The proposed debate between incumbent President Donald Ramotar and Presidential Candidate of the Opposition coalition Brigadier (rtd.) David Granger is a “go, go, go.”
The confirmation of the debate, being organsied by the Private Sector Commission, came from Dr Roger Luncheon, at his weekly post-Cabinet news briefing on Wednesday, April 01.
Meanwhile, Luncheon indicated that concerns about abuse of the state media by the governing PPP, has to be addressed by the elections administrator GECOM.
“In the context of elections, there is, and as far as I know it has never been revoked, a GECOM statutory responsibility of assigning and enforcing equal access,” Luncheon said at the Presidential Secretariat in Georgetown. He said that this so-called enforcement responsibility governs both the state and private media.
The Private Sector Commission Chairman, Ramesh Persaud had written President Ramotar calling for all contesting parties to be given equal access to the state media.
Persaud, in his letter, had said that in the PSC’s engagements with various local and overseas stakeholders, the issue of equitable access to state and private radio and television were seen as a priority.
He said the PSC had “determined that it is necessary for there to be a clear and defined policy and requirements governing broadcast licensees.”
Persaud called on the President to urgently address the issue, suggesting that the regulations of the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa with regard to regulations governing Party Election Broadcasts and Political Advertisements during the election period, be considered.
Luncheon said that he is yet to be made aware of this letter from Persaud to the President.
However, he said any response from the President would invoke existing statutory provisions which points to equal access is “fundamental” in an elections period on the part of both the state and private media.