Government spokesman Dr. Roger Luncheon yesterday described a recent conference on electoral reforms as a “purposeless” exercise with less than a year remaining before general elections are held.
The event was hosted last Friday by the Guyana Human Rights Association (GHRA) and attracted participation from most of the opposition parties in and out of parliament. However, the governing PPP did not attend the event and the organisers relayed that they were told the party’s executives would be busy at the time the conference was being held.
Dr. Luncheon, an executive member of the PPP’s Central Committee, told reporters at his weekly post-Cabinet news conference that the Association could not be serious in hosting such an event at this time. “Could you imagine telling political parties and the Guyanese people ‘we ain’t decide yet, we’re on the verge of considering reforms the year before elections’? Frankly speaking, I thought it was a rather sterile and purposeless event but I don’t hold any grudge against people being given an opportunity to wax publicly,” he declared.
It was the general view among the parties and other attendees at the event that nothing should be done at this time that could result in the postponement of the elections. At the end of the forum, it was decided that the GHRA would follow up with the ruling party in order to understand its positions on the issues discussed, that a follow up forum be held and that a report be prepared and circulated on the outcome of the forum, on talks with the ruling party and a framework on the way forward.