Full Court to rule soon on appeal to strike out election petition

The Full Court will soon deliver its ruling in the appeal filed by Chief Election Officer Keith Lowenfield, who is seeking to have the election petition brought by opposition PPP/C parliamentarian Ganga Persaud, struck out.

At a hearing yesterday afternoon, acting Chief Justice Roxane George SC, who is hearing the case along with Justice Franklyn Holder, said that the court needed no further clarifications from the parties and that notices will be sent out for decision.

Before retiring from the Bench, former acting Chief Justice Ian Chang had overruled Lowenfield’s summons, which contended that Persaud’s election petition had no material facts and should be struck out. Lowenfield thereafter appealed the ruling to the Full Court of the High Court.

In addition to the claim that Persaud’s petition lacks material facts, Lowenfield contends in his appeal that Justice Chang erred in law when he failed to direct his mind to the application and apply the proper principles applicable to the striking out of the petition on grounds that it disclosed no reasonable cause of action and is frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of the process of the court.

The High Court had been asked to rule on whether the pleadings, as revealed in the election petition, disclosed a cause of action. Justice Chang had ruled that the court could not make such a determination, since it might mean that he would in essence be determining the election petition itself.

Persaud had filed the petition calling on the High Court to declare the entire May 11, 2015 general elections process flawed and containing many procedural errors and so many instances of fraudulent and/or suspicious actions that “the results that have been derived from the process cannot be credibly deemed to represent accurately the will of the electorate.”

He had also asked the court to order a recount of all ballots cast in the elections.

The PPP/C has refused to accept that the APNU+AFC alliance won the 2015 elections.

The opposition party’s position since the elections is that it has been robbed of votes through a carefully planned rigging process on the part of the APNU+AFC coalition. Local and international observers have, however, declared that the polls were free and fair.

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