Formal negotiations are ongoing with a contractor who will conduct the cross-matching of fingerprints taken during the national House-to-House registration exercise, Guyana Elections Commission Chairman Dr. Steve Surujbally says.
The process is being funded by Guyana‘s international development partners and should start shortly. Surujbally told Stabroek News on Thursday that the commission has already produced the disc of fingerprints and is ready to send it off to the contractor which the donors will finally select.
The completion of the cross-matching exercise will signal the finishing point of the production of the new National Register of Registrants (NRR). That exercise is done to identify any multiple registrants but that has not been a problem for the commission in the past. Only after the completion of the new NRR would there be any production of new national identification cards, he added.
“We have to show that the NRR has no duplicates before we proceed in that direction,” he pointed out.
The commission however continues to issue temporary replacement documents for lost ID cards.
GECOM has not yet set a date for the second phase of the continuous registration exercise, and this would only be done after the NRR database is solid and cannot be questioned and is acceptable to all political parties.
Meanwhile, as regards preparations for the local government elections, Surujbally noted that it is still crucial for the Joint Task Force on local government reform to complete deliberations.