Incoming Chairman of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), St, Vincent and the Grenadines, Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves criticised those who appeared opposed to the regional grouping seeking to preserve democracy in Guyana in keeping with the Charter of Civil Society.
He hailed outgoing Chairman of CARICOM Barbados’ Prime Minister Mia Mottley’s work on assisting to preserve democracy in Guyana “despite unwarranted, vulgar and opportunistic criticisms of her from a certain jaundiced sources who ought to know better.”
Gonsalves was virtually condemned by Chairman of A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change, Joseph Harmon for saying that President David Granger must accept the results of the national vote recount and that he “should take his licks like a man.” Granger subsequently endorsed Harmon’s position as one that reflects the coalition’s and the Guyana government’s.
For her part, Mottley on Monday again expressed concern that there appeared to be efforts at stalling Guyana’s long-outstanding general and regional elections.
“We trust and pray that we are in a position as a family to work together but we cannot ignore principles when it is inconvenient to stand by them,” she told the opening of the CARICOM Summit,” she said.
Mottley restrained herself from delving into details about Guyana’s political landscape, only saying that the regional organisation awaits next Wednesday’s decision by the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) on an appeal of a Guyana Court of Appeal decision on what constitutes “valid votes” by the People’s Progressive Party (PPP).
Mottley added that “it is regrettable that there is still no clarity as to the conclusion of that electoral process.”
The CARICOM Chairman recalled not only a CARICOM Observer Mission but also a team of national vote recount scrutineers after the regional organisation observed that “it was not going to be an easy ride for a declaration of a result from the March 2nd elections.”
The Barbados Prime Minister has already faced a firestorm by supporters of A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) for her criticism of the Chief Elections Officer, Keith Lowenfield for unilaterally subtracting 115,000 votes from the 460.352 that were cast on polling day and recounted as “valid votes.”
Lowenfield has said that he presented his report containing “valid and credible” results to the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) based on advice from the Guyana Court of Appeal .
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