The PPP has criticized the Guyana Elections Commission’s (Gecom) move to collaborate with the Guyana National Youth Council (GNYC) stating that it reeked of American interference.
PPP General Secretary Clement Rohee said, “As far at the PPP is concerned this youth grouping is a creature of eternal interference through the LEAD project and is nothing more than a group of partisan persons who are attempting to hijack the name Guyana National Youth Council.”
He said Gecom’s decision to “enter [into] a formal relationship” with the GNYC was suspect because there are other youth organizations that were never approached. Rohee said the council has no foot to stand on when it comes to representing Guyana’s youth on a formal basis.
Rohee hammered away at the process by which Gecom and GNYC entered into a collaboration accusing both Chief Election Officer Keith Lowenfield and Gecom Chairman Dr Steve Surujbally of overstepping their bounds. He said the Gecom commissioners were never consulted on any such proposals and that in itself meant Gecom had no right to enter into any formal relationship with any group.
Rohee said the party would need more clarification of the collaboration and the connection to the US Leadership and Democracy (LEAD) project.
The Government of Guyana had contested the implementation of the $300 million project administered by USAID and had even revoked the work permit of Canadian Glen Bradbury, who was heading the project in April last year. The project was eventually given the go-ahead in June after talks between local and US officials.
Gecom had said in a press release issued last week that it had held a meeting with the GNYC on Thursday and it was agreed that the youth organisation would assist in disseminating strategic communication messages countrywide as part of Gecom’s Civic and Voter Education Programme.
The PPP General Secretary also said that Gecom had to intensify voter education programmes especially in the Hinterland communities.