The way has been cleared for Local Government Elections to be held on any date between mid March and the end of May, 2016, according to thr Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM).
The elections management authority said it was now up to Minister of Communities, Ronald Bulkan to set the date within that time-frame.
Following is a statement by GECOM.
The Secretariat of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) is now in full operational mode for the conduct of Local Government Elections (LGE).
This change in gear was caused by the issuance of several related Orders by the Minister of Communities, including Order No. 23 of 2015 on Friday 23-Oct-2015 which identifies 9 Towns and 62 NDCs where Local Government Elections (LGE) will be held. This Order allows the Elections Commission to extract the voters list for the identified areas for Local Government Elections from the current National Register of Registrants (NRR).
The fully constituted Elections Commission with all members present, sitting at its Statutory Meeting held on Tuesday 22-Sep-2015, had already unanimously decided that the qualifying date to be used for the extraction of voters’ lists will be 29-Feb-2016.
As a consequence of the above, and given the current work plan of the GECOM Secretariat, Local Government Elections can be held no earlier than Monday 14-Mar-2016 and no later than 29-May-2016.
The appointment of the specific date within this period as “Election Day” is still to be made by another Ministerial Order.
Following the extraction of the Preliminary Lists of Voters for the all Local Government Areas, eligible voters are invited to fully utilize the Claims & Objections period to scrutinize, sanitize and update these lists.
During this Claims and Objections period, which will now commence on 09-Nov-2015, persons who will be 18 years and over as at 29-Feb-2016 will be allowed to make claims to have their registration recorded at the address in the constituency in which they live, either as new registrants or by transfer. In addition, they will be allowed to make objections to entries in the list on which their names appear which they know do not represent persons who actually live in their respective constituencies. Other transactions such as corrections to the recorded particulars of eligible voters and change of name, supported by the appropriate source documents, will also be permitted during this period.
To facilitate this C&O exercise a total of 153 offices will be established across all the Local Government Areas identified for Local Government Elections. Lists will be posted in each electoral division in these areas and in accordance with the relevant constituencies.
The offices will be open for business Monday thru Friday from 3:30 pm to 7:00 pm and 10:00 am to 2:00 pm on Saturdays and Sundays during the Claims and Objections period.
GECOM urges all eligible voters to make full use of this period to ensure a credible electoral roll is produced.
Eligible voters should look out for frequent GECOM publications in the print, electronic and social media in addition to fliers, posters and banners providing greater detail and updated information as the time approaches.