Dr Mangal’s latest tirade and expedition into invincible absurdity (‘Mangal says Surujbally ignored list of complaints about 2011 elections’; report in SN, August 6) needs really only a one sentence answer: all of the deficiencies raised in his letter to the Chairman should have been directed at the Head of the Secretariat – namely Mr Boodoo, the same Mr Boodoo whom he has publicly supported to retain the position of Chief Election Officer.
Commissioners, including Dr Mangal, have had and have seized the opportunity to raise those very issues in the presence of Mr Boodoo, at two separate post-2011 elections retreats. Besides, those issues have been massaged ad nauseum at Commission statutory meetings.
On the matter of my opinion on the 2011 elections being the best ever, one must understand the genesis of that position. Throughout my exposure (actual experience and from the literature), the Official List of Electors (OLE) is globally usually the bone of contention. The 2011 OLE was near perfect. For the first time ever, no one questioned or complained about the accuracy of the OLE. Further, for the first time ever in the history of Guyana, we were able to get the contesting political parties to sign on to a Code of Conduct for Political Parties, to which they generally adhered.
All of the personal attacks against me are valueless. The Boodoo matter is history.
Allow me to assuage the Stabroek News’ fear that “the continuing acrimony portends bruising battles at the Commission.” I will ensure that there will be no continuing acrimony nor will there be bruising battles. At Commission level, I presided over 12 years of mature (even if sometimes stormy) debate. Mr Boodoo’s contract has not been renewed. We will now move forward in relative tranquillity and civility of debate. That I guarantee.
Dr Steve Surujbally