Commissioners shoot down move to have Gecom PRO act as deputy chief election officer

An attempt to appoint Guyana Elections Commission (Gecom) Public Relations Officer (PRO) Vishnu Persaud to act in the position of Deputy Chief Elections Officer was stymied after three commissioners objected to the proposal.

Stabroek News understands that at the last meeting of Gecom commissioners on Tuesday, a proposal was floated by a senior member of Gecom to appoint Persaud to act in the post. Deputy CEO Calvin Benn is on leave and is not expected to return to the post as he has informed Gecom that he does not want his contract renewed. However, after the proposal was floated, the three opposition commissioners reportedly immediately objected to it and the meeting moved on to other business.

Gecom recently appointed Keith Lowenfield as Chief Election Officer and National Registration Officer as it makes preparations for possible elections. Lowenfield had previously been functioning as acting Deputy CEO while Benn was acting CEO.

Civil society organisations and western missions have urged that all political parties work together for the staging of local government elections by August 1 this year.

These elections have not been held since 1994 and have been repeatedly deferred. New local government bills have been passed and Parliament recently approved a bill to pave the way for elections by August 1, 2014. The bill was not supported by the government.

There have been murmurings from the ruling PPP/C that it is of the view that Gecom might not be adequately prepared and recently, President Donald Ramotar said that government is yet to decide when it will issue the order for Gecom to prepare for local government elections.

Minister of Local Government Norman Whittaker has said that the electorate is not yet ready for polls and more work has to be done with them. Critics have skewered this explanation as being an excuse for avoiding local government polls. Gecom has said that it is ready and awaiting the instruction of government.

More in Local News

Comments

About these comments

The comments section is intended to provide a forum for reasoned and reasonable debate on the newspaper's content and is an extension of the newspaper and what it has become well known for over its history: accuracy, balance and fairness. We reserve the right to edit or delete comments which contain attacks on other users, slander, coarse language and profanity, and gratuitous and incendiary references to race and ethnicity.

Get the day's headlines from SN in your inbox every morning:

Most Read This Week

  1. The medical school sign on the Buddy’s building

    Buddy’s Pool Hall, Night Club closed after business falls

  2. Barry Dataram

    Who is to blame for Dataram escape?

  3. Lakeram Kewlachand

    Gangaram man takes his own life

  4. Wayne Isaacs (New York Post photograph)

    Guyanese-born cop charged with killing unarmed civilian in NY

  5. The Rio Inn at Forshaw and Oronoque Streets

    Teen shot dead outside Rio nightclub

  6. Courtenay Griffith’s home in Lodge that is earmarked to be demolished.

    City to tear down 52 derelict buildings

  7. Barry Dataram

    Absent Barry Dataram found guilty of drug trafficking

  8. The bus in the trench along Homestretch Avenue.

    Bus ends up in Homestretch trench

  9. Ryan Sergeant

    Youth killed, friend wounded after nightclub shooting


Recommended For You