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Reject Jagdeo’s nominees for GECOM Chairmanship; Afro-Guyanese orgs weren’t consulted- ACDA

The African Cultural and Development Association (ACDA) on Thursday called on President David Granger to discard Opposition Leader, Bharrat Jagdeo’s list of six nominees for the post of Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) because no African Guyanese organisation has been consulted.

“The ACDA  is consequently requesting that this list be firmly rejected until full and complete consultations are conducted with all groups representative of the diversity of Guyana’s population,” the organisation said in a statement.

ACDA’s call came almost one hour before the Ministry of the Presidency released a press statement quoting the Guyanese leader as saying that he has since formally asked Jagdeo to submit the curriculum vitae of the nominees.

ACDA disputed the Opposition Leader’s claim that he last month held broad-based consultations with civil society organisations including those representing labour, business, religion, youth and women. The 23-year old organisation noted that neither ACDA nor any other Afro-Guyanese organisation was consulted. “A comprehensive review of the list of stakeholders engaged would reveal  the inaccuracy of this claim since the Leader of the Opposition has never consulted with  ACDA or any other group representing the rights of the African Guyanese section of the population.”


Calling the failure to consult with such entities “evidence to the polarised approach to the consultation process” dating back to 1992, ACDA demanded that the Opposition Leader embarks on a fresh round of consultations to decide who would succeed Dr. Steve Surujbally as head of GECOM.

“The ACDA consequently demands that the leader of the PPPC consult fully with all interest groups so as to compile a new list of nominees reflective of the issues raised by all of civic society and not only those elements of civil society acceptable to the PPPC,” the organisation said.

The nominees include Rhyaan Shah, an East Indian rights activist;  business executive, Ramesh Dookhoo; former Chief of Staff of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF), Retired Major General Norman Mc Lean; History Professor, James Rose; Governance and Conflict Resolution expert, Lawrence Lachmansingh and Attorney-at-Law and Chartered Accountant, Christopher Ram.

The Guyana Trades Union Congress (GTUC) , Federation of Independent Trade Unions of Guyana, Private Sector Commission are among those with which Jagdeo said he has consulted before submitting the names on Wednesday, December 21, 2016 to  President Granger.

  • Emile_Mervin

    Forget about the PPPs list of candidates for Gecom Chairman. The Coalition, with all its flaws, does not give the impression it will be ceding power in 2020 as long as Jagdeo is helming the PPP.

    Where is the ACDA on the Benschop, Munroe and Wharton lock down by the Jagdeo regime? This boy has a huge debt to pay.

  • Gtloyal

    In my ignorance of how things are done at certain levels, I have two questions which someone may be kind enough to answer. Is the opposition leader the only one who can submit names of candidates for the post of Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM)? Must the person be chosen from his list?

    • Emile_Mervin

      1. As per the constitutional arrangement, the Opposition Leader will submit a list of names for the post of Gecom chairman.

      2. The President will then go over the list with the Opposition Leader and pick one. So far, the process has been adhered to. Perhaps with the exception of Dr. Surujbally, a veterinarian, the other chairs were of legal background: Harold Bollers, Doodnauth Singh,

    • Emile_Mervin

      1. Yes, as per the constitutional amendment of 2000 that birthed Gecom, the Opposition Leader will submit a list of six names, preferably one eligible to be a judge or of high reputation, to the President. The Opposition Leader MUST CONSULT with civil society stakeholders before submitting the list.

      2. Because it is constitutional, yes, only a person from the list can be chosen. Additionally, the list Jagdeo submitted is unsatisfactory, except the legal background candidates.

      • Gtloyal

        Thank you very much. This is a formula that guarantees problems. Should the president consider the list unsatisfactory, I guess he would have to return it to the opposition leader. He may have to do this many times until he finds someone of his liking.
        May the joy of the season be with you.

  • Col123

    AFLAC … still praying with the white man books…the king James slave version at that!…they should be looking to re intigrate ALL our great African culture and customs in our society instead of panhandling…. I know…the truth will hurt some folks… but Happy New Year…as we support them other folks calendar count….