US to assist in strengthening Guyana’s democracy to prevent repeat of 2020 elections debacle

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During a meeting with Attorney General Anil Nandlall and Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Governance Gail Teixeira on Wednesday, US Ambassador to Guyana Sarah Ann Lynch recommitted her government’s intention to help strengthen the country’s institutional democracy to avoid any reoccurrence of the 2020 elections debacle.

According to a statement from the Ministry of Legal Affairs, the US Diplomat expressed her admiration for the legal team that defended the rule of law, constitutionality and democracy during the multiplicity of proceedings that were filed before the declaration of the March 2, 2020 elections.

For his part, the Attorney General thanked the Ambassador for her, the US Embassy and the US Government’s critical role in ensuring the results of the elections were not derailed.

Meanwhile, the US Ambassador used the opportunity to commit the US Government intention to assist and collaborate with the Guyana Government in a number of areas, including but not limited to security, security training and enhancement, human services, legislative reforms and strengthening Guyana’s institutional democracy to avoid a reoccurrence of the 2nd March 2020 elections debacle.

US Ambassador to Guyana Sarah Ann Lynch, Attorney General Anil Nandlall, and Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Governance Gail Teixeira

Guyana’s March 2 General and Regional Elections ended up lasting five months – largely due to attempts by political operatives and comprised electoral officials to deny the will of the people.

Dubbed the “Mother of all Elections”, this year’s electoral process saw blatant attempts by electoral officials to alter the results of the elections, with Returning Officer for Region Four Clairmont Mingo giving to the then incumbent APNU/AFC Coalition more votes than they had gained at the polls.

Clairmont Mingo

With countless stakeholders raising concerns about those discrepancies, a national recount ensued – but despite agreeing to the exercise, APNU’s Leader David Granger sought to have the process frustrated through a number of legal battles filed by the party’s supporters.

There were more challenges at the end of the countrywide recount, with the APNU/AFC refusing to accept the certified results which showed that the Peoples Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) had won the election.

More legal battles ensued, pressure from the international community mounted, and eventually sanctions were imposed by the US against certain officials.

Eventually, Granger and his regime conceded defeat and Dr Irfaan Ali was sworn in as president.