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GECOM says PPP’s claims are inaccurate; President sticks by his figures, not conceding defeat

Donald Ramotar and David Granger.

The Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) says a check of the Statements of Poll that the People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPPC) had claimed were fake has revealed that such claim is inaccurate.

But President Donald Ramotar is sticking by his numbers, saying that his were obtained from the Returning Officers that were used to tabulate the Preliminary Results that have been released by the Commission. “I stand by those figures. The figures used by the RO- that’s the Returning Officer-to tabulate the numbers that they presented to us were not the same as what we have,” Ramotar told Demerara Waves Online News.

The President refused to concede defeat: “I am not conceding. How can I concede? I won these elections,” he said.

GECOM Chairman, Dr. Steve Surujbally told Demerara Waves Online News that the Commission checked the PPP’s Statements of Poll were identical to those in possession of the Commission.

“All of the 21 boxes taken into evidence that they said the numbers have changed, they in fact had not changed. The PPP SOPs that they presented us with- when we checked the official SOPs- they were exactly the same, an exact replica,” he said.

Surujbally assured that the Commission went through all of them- 4216, 4223, 4237,4266, 4267, 4279, 4287, 4292, 4323, 4352, 4358, 4359, 4385, 4392, 4643, 4644, 4656, 4701, 4703, 4707 and 4723-“all of these 21 boxes, the PPP’s SOPs are identical with the GECOM SOPs and what they have there as purportedly GECOM SOPs with this great difference I cannot tell you where they got them from.”

GECOM has to legally wait until midday Saturday before it can official declare the results, name the winner and the allocation of seats to the political parties.

Asked what has been the PPPC’s response so far, he said their personnel promised to provide more evidence but up to shortly after 7PM Friday none had been submitted. “At this stage I cannot continue to prolong the agony of this nation,” he added.

The GECOM Chairman remarked that President Ramotar had told them earlier Friday that he would be willing to concede defeat if it was proven that the PPP’s claim of bogus SOPs was false.  “The President did say that if I could prove even if one case that they were wrong that he would concede. Those were his words but, of course, those mean nothing to me,” said Surujbally.

Despite mounting pressure by civil society, the Private Sector Commission, United States, Canada and Britain for the PPPC to accept the results and that the elections were free, fair and credible, that party has refused to concede defeat.

However, a number of government ministers have bid their staff farewell and the PPPC-aligned Indian Arrival Committee has welcomed and congratulated the A Partnership for National Unity+ Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) on its victory at the May 11, 2015 polls.