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Jagdeo floats idea of United Nations conducting Guyana’s general elections

Last Updated on Thursday, 6 September 2018, 14:34 by Denis Chabrol

Opposition Leader, Bharrat Jagdeo.

Opposition Leader, Bharrat Jagdeo on Thursday suggested that the United Nations (UN) should run Guyana’s elections due to historical concerns about free and fair elections.

“Maybe, we should just contract it out to the United Nations. It can be cheaper,” he told a news conference.

Jagdeo signaled that his People’s Progressive Party was not prepared to agree to Guyana’s constitution to be amended to allow for the appointment of the seven-member Guyana Elections Commission to be done by Parliament. President David Granger recently said the National Assembly should be involved in appointing the Commissioners because the current model has resulted in gridlock.

Jagdeo said with the United Nations in charge of the process, Guyana would be able to hold “credible” elections  with “oversight” by Guyanese.

The former Guyanese leader pointed out that the role of the United Nations was merely an idea he floated that could be discussed with President David Granger in high-level political talks expected to begin next month.

Maybe there could be a “heavy presence” of the United Nations in the electoral machinery and the formulation of a credible voters’ list

Apart from the Carter Center model of GECOM, Jagdeo said there was no other model and Granger has botched the model by unilaterally appointing a GECOM Chairman. Jagdeo restated that Granger has changed that model for the first time in 25 years of practice and has acted unconstitutionally.

The opposition People’s Progressive Party has since appealed a High Court decision on the appointment of the GECOM Chairman

Noting that in the past the People’s National Congress Reform had refused to accept defeat, “too many Guyanese fear that APNU (A Partnership for National Unity) will rig the elections”.

APNU’s largest political party is the PNCR.

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September 2018