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President maintains he must select “fit and proper” GECOM Chairman; to meet Jagdeo soon

FLASH BACK: President David Granger greets Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo on his arrival at State House for consultations on the appointment of the Chancellor of the Judiciary and the Chief Justice,

President David Granger on Wednesday highlighted that the High Court has confirmed that he has the right to select a “fit and proper” person to become the Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), just days after the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) signaled that it might join in appealing the ruling by Chief Justice, Roxane George-Wiltshire that the President could reject the entire list and appoint someone of his choice;

 

“I am studying that opinion and I am looking at the implications of that opinion and the decision that I have to make. It was quite clear that among everything she has written, she has not interfered with the President’s right, guaranteed by the Constitution,  to select  a person who is fit and proper.

And in this regard, I will continue to do what the Constitution calls upon me to do-select a person who is fit and proper. Nothing the Chief Justice wrote has prevented me or inhibited my exercise of that authority or that power,” the President told reporters at State House after accepting the credentials of foreign envoys to Guyana.

So far Opposition Leader, Bharrat Jagdeo has submitted three lists totalling 18 nominees, but Granger has rejected two of the lists and is yet to announce a decision on the third list which includes former GECOM Chairman, Retired Major General Joseph Singh and Attorney-at-Law, Teni Housty.

Chief Justice, Roxanne George.

The President on Wednesday said he would soon be meeting with the Opposition Leader, but it is unclear whether he would tell Jagdeo that he has rejected this third list and that he would be going ahead and name a Chairman. He hinted that the meeting could be held next week as there are a number of engagements this week.

Jagdeo last week frowned on a section of the Chief Justice’s written decision, based on a request for a constitutional interpretation by City businessman Marcel Gaskin, that empowers the President to reject a list of nominees and go ahead and appoint a GECOM Chairman  who is a judge, retired judge or someone who is eligible to be a judge.

In part, the Chief Justice states, “It does appear to me that failure to submit a list as provided for speaks to the provision of an acceptable list, as discussed earlier. If by not choosing any of the persons listed the President thereby find the list unacceptable, the proviso to Article 161 (2) would apply and the President should then go on to appoint a judge or former judge or person who would qualify for appointment as a judge in Guyana or the Commonwealth to the post of Chairman of GECOM.”

Marcel Gaskin

In that regard, Jagdeo stated that the PPP would assess whether there should be a challenge and seek legal advice on joining an appeal. “Jagdeo disclosed that there will be consultations with lawyers to determine whether the PPP will join others in appealing the issue,” the PPP quoted him as saying.

The Chief Justice has also ruled that the Opposition Leader’s nominees do not have to include judge, former judge or a person qualified to be a judge, the President is not obliged to select a person from the six names on the list unless he has determined that the persons are unacceptable as fit and proper for the appointment  and that he cannot deem the entire list unacceptable if one or more nominees is not fit and proper.

Justice George also ruled that the President is required to state reasons for deeming each of the six names on the list unacceptable. Previously, the President, in publicly responding to the Chief Justice’s ruling, had asked where in the Constitution states that he should give reasons for rejecting the nominees.

GECOM has been without a Chairman since veterinarian Dr. Steve Surujbally stepped down on February 28, 2017 although he had officially ended his 15-year tenure in November 2016.

  • itmickey

    The nation deserves to know what presy is thinking…he is not a man unto himself…he is answerable to the ppl of this country…there are plenty other things that he is constitutionally required to do but fails to address them…

    • Emile_Mervin

      Jagdeo should tell the nation why the PPP made the decision to include in the constitutional clause governing the selection process, the part that says, after the Opposition Leader submits a list to the President, the list must not be unacceptable to the President.

      The PPP was in power at the time this became law, and the only conclusion I can draw is that the PPP wanted to have the last say in who became Chairman. Why the PPP never had qualms over past lists submitted by the Opposition was because the PPP was always assured victory based on numerical majority support from Indians.Today, the PPP forms the Opposition because that majority support is not there.

      And Granger is using the constitutional right to reject the any list deemed unacceptable the same way Jagdeo used the immunity clause to engage in shenanigans with public finds, assets and resources. Only difference is, Granger is not getting rich, selling state assets to friends or building mansions for He is slow, but not slime.

      • rs dasai

        Emile
        So , are you saying that G Granger needs a GECOM Chairman, of his ilk, who can add 2&2 and get 5 in the PNC’s favour having accused Boodhoo ?

        • Emile_Mervin

          No at all.

          • rs dasai

            Emile
            I think not, but the indesiciveness (deliberation?) speaks loudly and negatively for a Head of State.

      • itmickey

        A lot of ppl fail to recognise that the ONLY way this chap is president is because of a coalition…the new branded PNC (APNU) did not receive one ‘ounce’ more support than they did in previous elections…if it hadnt been for the AFC one seat the PPP would have been in power again…just so you know, that ‘one seat’ has dwindled…a lot of ppl like myself who looked at the APNU/AFC as a breath of fresh air have since awaken from our momentary euphoric sense of freedom and realised that this beautiful nation is going backward on the double.

        We must not be slaves to political biases…examine issues based on merits and call it how you see it…not this back and forth with PNC/PPP and who did what, when, where,why…that way we continue to be their slaves…SMH

  • Emile_Mervin

    You are not saying anything I don’t know. I was open to Cheddie Jagan and the PPP in 1992. I was open to Bharrat Jagdeo and the PPP in 1999. Then the spit hit the fan. I became biased against Jagdeo for hijacking the PPP and using it as his personal vehicle to political power and personal enrichment. If I appear biased towards the Coalition it is because it represents the lesser of two evils. So I wear my bias with pride and purpose.

    • Col123

      Bias… Prejudices, are markers of deep rooted psychological illnesses… and you wear it well.

    • Danny Persaud

      Ya lie, ppl like you will give an arm and a leg to ur loyal pnc congregation..no matter the situation..
      All the good mr BJ and the ppp has done for guyana you will never give a dam…
      Ya lie for saying you were open to cheddie..you are a high class racist to indo ppl…don’t try to be nice….we will catch you one day..

  • Col123

    The champions of free and fair elections… the Honorable PNC…says it all!!!

  • cuffy

    After pliers it’s,chakademus turn,What a bomb.

  • pollard

    all the die hard of Jadgeo and PPP has spoken up for the party,it clearly shows you people loved the pass with all that went wrong. do you people have another political party that can win against PPP or APNU? that is my question.is General Jadgeo allowing any other person in the PPP to be the new leader and have their own leadership?who you people are trying to fool by saying no to PPP and no PNC/APNU,we all know the PNC never win an election ,we all knows they are riggers,yes AFC only choice to help this country was to join with the riggers as you people mention, because they never won an election, AFC party are those from PPP and some from PNC who was forced out by King Jdgeo, because he beleives like Trump he alone can do all,but you know what ,i am up with the snake tongue of you people, because it seems you (all) do not know your &&& from your ears.i beleive you all wants to own a mansion too and do as Jadgeo did.

    • Col123

      Your premise is simply fallacious… but you are entitled to your nonsense. Countries with questionable electoral outcomes are considered pariah in this world… those countries don’t contribute anything positive to their society and to this world…and they are not in good standing anywhere with regards to respect…what else do you want us to be popularly known as in this world,other than the Jim Jones suicide country ?
      Twenty eight years of rigging didn’t teach you anything?… let the AFC/PNC coalition continue with their winning streak … why casting a shadow of doubt in the process?

      • Victor

        you need to have a brain scan , AFC + APNU WON THE ELECTION ,SO YOU HAVE TO TRY TO WIN 2020 NOT BY PEDDLING LIES ,
        Burnham + the USA +BRITAIN + CANADA ,HAD SEEN THE DANGER OF HAVING A COMMUNIST ON THE SOUTH AMERICAN CONTINENT ,SO THAT IS THE MAIN REASON THE PPP HAD TO BE KEPT OUT ,THE POOR UNEDUCATED COULD NOT SEE THE DANGER , NOW THE DRUG LORDS MUST BE KEPT OUT,THE USA HAS MANY BUSINESS SUPPORTERS OF THE PPPc IN USA JAIL ,WHAT A COINCIDENT ,NOW YOU ARE CALLING ON SO MANY PEOPLE WHO DESERVE SOME RESPECT ,WHO SUFFERED UNDER THE HAND OF A USA PREACHER .
        AND JAGDEO IS CLAIMING IMMUNITY , ONLY THE GUILTY CLAMER FOR IMMUNITY , HE MAY GET A SURPRISE .

        • Col123

          You are dribbling here Victor… have you medication dosage rechecked…go!

          • brain dead idiot

            look like we having fun with the pass we know the rigging will happen can’t teach an old dog new tricks .

        • brain dead idiot

          in which country does an election have fake documents presented and the elections are allowed to continue cause massa say so they just didn’t get to rig it for the apnu/afc get two thirds so they could get to do what they want suspect winning.the pnc never won by themselves and i bet 2020 they will win by themselves the afc is a thing of the pass.

  • pollard

    you all will be gone in a moment and time and PPP and PNC will still be roaring lions separating the 2 main races, just like how LFS and Cheddie has gone almost 20 years later ,what has the country accomplish without those 2, after the 28 years of the rigging has passed, PPP under Jadgeo , this country should of been glowing with lots of progress, not still mentioning 28 years of rigging, we the people should of been talking of progress under Jadgeo/PPP ,what is the cause for most people to keep burying their heads in the sand,speak of the development we had in 23 years,when a person achieved something good all should and must celebrate.i agree the Burnham was in power because of rigged elections ,he had the support from afar to remain their because of not wanting a commonist,who is at fault? who to be blame ?that is the politics,stop fooling the people about rigged elections and Jim Jones, tell them why Burnham had to remain their,, i do not want to hear PPP must and should and does win ,fair, i agree by race the should win,give substance (achievements) for 23 years,i been reading news for 23 years. i not campaigning for any political party or any human,,no politician takes me to a voting booth.elaborate on rigging is that all we have to offer the next generation.

    • Col123

      Despite those years of campaigning against lawlessness , drugs and all the stated corruption, the Granger Coalition government is down the same bloody road with a wrecking ball to the demise of the welfare of working folks…where is the leadership, kindness, regards for the working stiffs of these current ruling so called leaders?… all the hate and animosity every bloody day!
      Where are the bloody Freedom Fighters? … and them handlers, trainers and financiers .. they all dead?

  • Col123

    You are making some poor non related assumptions pollard… it can only be a bad day when it rains and restrict my golfing!

    • pollard

      i accustomed to life and living, and i do not have to shout out here on a blogging site.to draw attention from bloggers. i had a life a and living where i came from, did not had to seek beyond the ocean to find material things and a house or gated community to feel like a human. and still have my property in Georgetown ,and business in the city,saw OJ playing golf in his gated community see if you can get hook up.

      • Col123

        Glad that you are living the good life… you have worked hard and deserve to enjoy it… others who were ethnically cleansed from their birth country in the 60s can relate to their experiences where ever they are…

  • Col123

    I don’t have an argument with your servitude mindset Victor…… maybe , we need more VAT taxes on education!.. that will get those kids educated!

    • Victor

      Donald said Country first do you know how many born USA.citizens fought and died so you and.many others can enjoy the blessed USA , so you are saying that serving your country is bad , ask what you can do for your country ,and not what your country can do for you ,your country will serve you in time , long live USA and Guyana

  • Victor

    Jagdeo ,will not relinquish his dream.to be president , so he will be the stumbling block in the pppc , Anil may try but Anil cannot.claim immunity , with over 400 souls unaccounted for under their watch ,good God people are funny or really really dumb