“The election results must be accepted” – Former House Speaker

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Former Speaker of the National Assembly, Ralph Ramkarran.
Former Speaker of the National Assembly, Ralph Ramkarran.

[www.inewsguyana.com] – Former Speaker of the National Assembly Ralph Ramkarran says the results of the 2015 General and Regional Elections must be accepted by political Parties, declaring his confidence in the mechanisms in place at the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) to produce credible results.

In his weekly blog on Conversationtree.org, Ramkarran said that GECOM, the electoral process and the elections, must be given the respect they deserve because they have stood the test of time, having earned that respect.

“The election results must be accepted because political leaders know that unless there is a total breakdown of the GECOM’s systems that are in place, which has never occurred since 1992, the outcome of the elections will be a true reflection of the will of the electorate,” said Ramkarran.

He made it clear that there is no excuse for elections violence and any such should be frowned upon and looked at with disdain.

He said “there must be no post-election violence for any reason whatsoever, including for any allegations that any political party is trying to ‘frustrate the process.’ No such attempt has been made since 1992 and no basis exists to suggest that any such attempt will now be made. Any political party that is guilty of irresponsible behavior, making unprovable or ridiculous allegations for the purpose of excusing violence, or of failing to restrain its supporters, does not deserve sympathy.”

Chairman of GECOM, Dr. Steve Surujbally.
Chairman of GECOM, Dr. Steve Surujbally.

“Elections in Guyana have been made to appear as ethnic, zero sum, events. Because ethnic interests are expressed through organized political allegiances, many believe that our elections are a competition for ethnic dominance and that results reflect a win or loss for an entire ethnic group. But somehow or other, after the elections are over and passions subside, we go about our business in a largely peaceful atmosphere, work and contribute to our country in multifarious ways, or struggle to make ends meet, and survive until the next elections,” said Ramkarran.

He said too that Guyanese have learnt from experience that political change is slow but that it happens.

“Whoever wins these elections, in the next ten years, barring the unexpected which is always possible in politics as in the UK last week, Guyana will undergo transformative political changes. Cheddi Jagan has taught us that success at politics requires, among other things, the application two basic principles – patience and persistence. The Opposition alliance, APNU+AFC, has taken to referencing Cheddi Jagan in its campaign. Both the PPP and APNU+AFC should heed his lesson,” he noted.

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