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GECOM approves APNU+AFC’s request for extension of Claims and Objections

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 September 2022, 16:22 by Denis Chabrol

The Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) on Wednesday decided to extend the Claims and Objections period by seven days, to afford eligible persons further opportunities to participate in the process, based on a request by the opposition A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC).

The elections management agency said persons who are desirous of making a Claim to be included in the Official List of Electors (OLE) have until Wednesday, 21st September, 2022 to do so. Similarly, persons who intend to object to the inclusion of names in the OLE have until Sunday, 25th September to submit their objections.

The three  pro-People’s Progressive Party Civic election commissioners- Sase Gunraj, Clement Rohee and Manoj Narayan- said in a joint letter that GECOM Chairman Retired Justice Claudette Singh supported the request.

APNU+AFC Chief Scrutineer Carol Smith-Joseph complained in a letter to the GECOM Chairman on Tuesday that banners posted outside a number of GECOM offices had misled the public into believing that the deadline for claims was September 18 when in reality it was September 11.

The Commission reminded that persons who were never previously registered can make a Claim, provided that he/she is a Guyanese citizen by birth, descent, or naturalization, or is a citizen from a Commonwealth country living in Guyana for one year or more and will be 18 years and older by 31st October, 2022.

In this regard, all eligible persons who intend to make a Claim are required to visit the GECOM Registration Office responsible for their area of residence with the applicable source document(s) such as original Birth Certificate, valid Passport, Adoption Certificate, or Naturalization Certificate / Certificate of Registration to be registered.

GECOM advised existing registrants to check the Preliminary List of Electors (PLE) posted at two prominent buildings in their respective Electoral Division / Sub Division, at the Registration Office responsible for their areas of residence, at GECOM’s Head Office, or on GECOM’s website at www.gecom.org.gy to verify the accuracy of their registration information.

In this regard, GECOM said persons who are required to update their registration records such as changes or corrections to their names and occupation, or to apply for a transfer in relation to their addresses are advised that those transactions would also be facilitated during this exercise. The relevant source documents such as an original Marriage Certificate, Deed Poll with Birth Certificate, or a new Birth Certificate reflecting the changes must be presented in the case of an application for a change or correction.

Further, objections against the inclusion of names in the PLE can be tendered to the Registration Officer of the Registration Area. Objections  can be submitted by an Elector who is listed in the same Division list / Sub Division list in which the person being objected to is listed. Objections can also be made by approved Scrutineers of Political Parties provided that any such Scrutineer has monitoring responsibilities for the Division / Sub Division in which the person being objected to is listed. The relevant original document(s) such as an original Death Certificate must be presented at the time of the hearing to support the basis upon which the objection is made.

In view of the foregoing, the Commission is urging all eligible persons to ensure that they use this extension to ensure that they are registered for inclusion in the Revised List of Electors (RLE) and ultimately the Official List of Electors  as it is a prerequisite to be eligible to vote. Persons are also encouraged to object to the inclusion of the name of any person whom they believe should not be in the list, based on the legal provisions.

For more information and clarification, persons can visit GECOM’s website at www.gecom.org.gy or call 225-0277-9 / 223-9653.