Election petition should be heard speedily

Dear Editor,

What is the status of the election petition filed in June 2015? It is now nearly three years that the election petition was filed with the High Court challenging the results of the May 2015 election. In India, in the state of Karnataka where assembly election results were declared on Tuesday, a petition to the Supreme Court filed on Wednesday afternoon was heard the very evening.  The hearing continued into Thursday morning and the court instructed the opposing parties to return on Friday with documents before it makes a ruling.

The point is, with an election petition being an urgent matter having to do with government formation, the Supreme Court heard the matter immediately. One recalls in September 2015 in Trinidad, there was an election petition on the September elections. The court heard it almost immediately in some three months. The ruling was appealed and the appellate court addressed it right away. In November 2000, the US Supreme Court heard an election petition right away making a final ruling within a day. Election petitions filed in Kenya, Canada, UK, etc were heard instantly.

Why after three years, the Guyana High Court cannot hear the election petition? Why can’t it be a matter of urgency?  Why can’t all the parties to the election dispute agree to have the matter heard urgently?

Yours faithfully,

Vishnu Bisram

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