PPP calls for review of GPSU elections observer status

-after executive’s reported endorsement of opposition candidate

The PPP has urged the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) to review the appointment of the Guyana Public Service Union (GPSU) as an observer group for the upcoming elections, saying a union executive’s apparent endorsement of an opposition candidate makes it unsuitable.

“We await GECOM’s response and determination of the matter,” PPP/C campaign manager Robert Persaud told Stabroek News. Persaud said the party brought the issue to GECOM’s attention with the hope that it would engage the GPSU to determine whether Murphy was speaking on her own behalf or on behalf of the union. He added that he had also copied the letter to GPSU President Patrick Yarde and the said hat the union was aware of the situation.

Persaud wrote GECOM Chairman Dr Steve Surujbally on Thursday, pointing out a newspaper report in which GPSU General Secretary Deborah Murphy is quoted as describing APNU candidate David Granger as “our David Granger,” while referring to the administration as “the government.”

The statements were made at the GPSU’s 19th Biennial Delegates’ Conference at the National Cultural Centre on Wednesday September 28. Persaud, who signed the letter as an Executive Committee Member of the PPP, added that Murphy’s “proclamations and enthusiasm” for Granger’s candidacy reflected the attitude of the general membership of the GPSU to the extent that Prime Minister Samuel Hinds, who spoke at the Conference, was heckled openly during his address.

“We believe that the point has been made that the GPSU is unsuitable to function as an independent observer at the general and regional elections,” he said, while noting that the union had been granted observer status by GECOM. “The positions are clearly incongruous and we therefore urge that the Commission reviews its earlier decision to accredit the GPSU,” he added.

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