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PPP dismisses APNU+AFC model for electoral reform consultations

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 May 2022, 22:07 by Denis Chabrol

The governing People’s Progressive Party (PPP) on Wednesday rejected calls by the opposition coalition of A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) for a “comprehensive” review of Guyana’s legal architecture for elections, saying that public consultations began six months ago.

“The call from the Coalition camp for a comprehensive review of what took place in March 2020 before electoral reforms are addressed is nothing but a delay tactic,” the PPP said.

The Government’s position is that the laws such as the Representation of the People Act would be amended and any constitutional amendments would be left to the bipartisan parliamentary Constitutional Reform Committee (CRC).

In ditching APNU+AFC’s announced plan to formally ask President Irfaan Ali for a 1999/2000 Constitution Reform Commission-model consultation that would include a multi-stakeholder/expert committee, a consensus chairperson, a public call for oral and written submissions, and several national conversations on electoral reform, the PPP reminded that the public consultation began in November 2021 and “are continuing.”

The PPP has labelled as “disingenuous” Mr. Norton’s call for national consultations, involving the public, civil society and the parliamentary political parties because those consultations  were underway.

“Were the increasingly embattled Parliamentary Opposition truly interested in a free, fair and transparent process, they would not
continue to undermine the national consultations on proposed amendments that would see electoral reform enacted,” the PPP said.

Reference was also made to efforts by the coalition to cheat the March 2020 general and regional elections.