- even though PPP/C won thousands of votes more than coalition Gov’t, and twice as many seats that were up for grabs
“We are not here to give support to statements made by the Opposition. We concentrated our efforts on the towns, the urban centres, that strategy worked,” said Natural Resources Minister and Government Spokesperson Raphael Trotman during a post-cabinet press briefing today.
He was at that time responding to a question posed by a reporter with regards to the recently concluded Local Government Elections (LGE) in Guyana and the conclusion of the Opposition Party that the result of these polls reflects the fact that the administration is “on losing ground” among the general voters in this country.
Minister Trotman posited that the APNU+AFC government is “quite satisfied” with the outcome of the LGE and that the elections and results confirm its strategy which “has worked”.
According to him, the administration is not “turned off” by what persons are deeming a “low turn-out” for the recently held local polls since the Government opines that the turn-out for the LGE was “quite average” based on what was obtained in the past and what presently occurs in other parts of the world.
“… we are quite satisfied with the outcome and we believe that the vision of the urbanisation of Guyana is actually taking root and we are well on our way to advancing our agenda,” the Natural Resources Minister noted.
The Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) on Monday had confirmed that less than 40 per cent of all eligible voters in Guyana had exercised their franchise (to cast votes) in the LGE this year.
According to the Government Information Agency (GINA) some 507, 584 persons were registered to vote in 542 constituencies across the country. However, only 239, 070 persons voted, representing a 47.1 percent voter turnout.
GECOM on Tuesday, also reported that the Government had won most of the Municipalities while the Opposition secured the majority of the Neighborhood Democratic Councils (NDCs) across the country.
Meanwhile, Opposition Leader Dr Bharrat Jagdeo says the PPP/C got 28,000 votes more than the governing APNU/AFC coalition at the recent Local Government polls.
This ‘massive win’, or in Dr Jagdeo’s words “a slaughter at the polls” – has seemingly knocked the previously vocal governing coalition into ‘silence’ mode.
Dr Jagdeo, at a news conference he hosted this afternoon at the PPP/C’s Freedom House headquarters in Georgetown, said the PPPC’s victory at the LGE was massive and significant in the sense that, out of a total of 1,166 seats up for grabs – the PPP/C won 754 (64.7%) while the APNU/AFC won 374 seats (32.2%). This means the Opposition party received twice as many seats than the APNU/AFC.
Dr Jagdeo said what is quite interesting to note is the fact that the PPP/C won 28,000 more votes than APNU/AFC when the voter turnout was just below 50 per cent whereas in the 2015 National Elections, the marginal difference was a mere 5,000 votes.
He also told reporters that several of the official figures released by the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) varies from that of the PPP/C. In this regard, he is urging the Commission to move swiftly to correct the inaccuracies.