By Jomo Paul
[www.inewsguyana.com] – With a mere thirteen days before the Guyanese electorate goes to the polls and two days before the members of the disciplined services cast their ballots, Guyana’s political parties on Thursday, April 29 signed the Code of Conduct for General and Regional Elections 2015, prepared by the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM).
The six political Parties contesting the elections signed the document in the presence of several election observers and members of the diplomatic community.
It should be noted that incumbent President, Donald Ramotar signed the Code of Conduct earlier today at the Office of the President.
Though some persons are skeptical about what effects the Code of Conduct will have on the political campaigning since the process is winding down as May 11 draws closer, GECOM Chairman Dr Steve Surujbally is adamant that the conduct will restore some amount of decency to the campaigners.
Dr Surujbally said the signing should be regarded as the “red letter day” pointing out that “we must recognize today as a occasion of political history…a day which reflects a reinforcement of the desire to reflect political maturity.”
According to him, the code of conduct heralds the process in which Guyanese can expect to see political differences cast aside and ad hominen attacks being left behind.
“The Code of Conduct for the 2015 General and Regional Elections is not an illusion. It was not conceived as a transitory a fly by night document…emerged from the genuine conviction relative to a need for such a guiding document and it is here to stay….decency does not have an expiry date,” said Dr Surujbally.
He said the political Parties signing onto the code was simply the right thing to do, noting that adherence to the code by the political faction would take them to a moral high ground.
“The code itself cannot be faulted, it is not a punitive code; therein lies its greatness. It is in essence as self-regulatory code,” he pointed out.
The Chairman made it clear that GECOM must not be placed in the position of trying to manage and produce credible elections in a hostile environment.
“This code must not be weakened by disgust or to be thrown in the dustbin by this evening…this code is more than a guideline, it must be seen as the holy grail for campaigning. It cannot disappear into political nothingness,” Dr Surujbally lamented.