Gecom IT staff shortage could affect voters’ lists – Rohee

PPP General Secretary Clement Rohee said yesterday that the deficit of critical IT personnel at the Guyana Elections Commission (Gecom) raises questions as to the integrity of the National Register of Registrants.

Speaking at his party’s weekly press conference, Rohee said the lack of IT personnel at supervisory and subordinate levels of Gecom’s IT Division could adversely affect the National Register of Registrants, and by extension the Preliminary and Final voters’ lists.

For this reason Rohee said he is skeptical of the integrity of the section tasked with compiling the above-mentioned information.

The statement by Rohee is the latest in a drawn-out debate concerning the readiness of Gecom.

Rohee said yesterday that Gecom’s IT Division has been understaffed for some time and lamented that significant enough efforts have not been made to fill them. He also said that the party continues to express its disappointment with the recruitment process of Gecom, as this does not involve its commissioners.

Further, he criticised what he sees as the lack of proper supervision and quality control measures in Gecom’s IT Division. These inadequacies, he says, combine to question the integrity of the section.

His statement follows concerns voiced two Saturdays ago by the three PPP commissioners on the commission. Despite indications by other commissioners and Gecom Chairman Steve Surujbally that the agency would be ready to hold local government elections six months after a date is provided by government, commissioners Mohamood Shaw, Keshav Mangal and Athmaram Mangar said this might not be the case.

The commissioners said there are several existing issues which must be addressed before Gecom is prepared to handle any elections. These issues, they elaborated, include the lack of sufficient education on the system under which new local government elections are to be held, and deficiencies within the agency’s IT Division, which is responsible for analyzing the National Register of Registrants from which information will be taken to compile the Preliminary and Final voters’ lists.

Surujbally subsequently released a statement reiterating his conviction of Gecom’s readiness.

 

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