APNU and PPP accuse each other of forging signatures on LGE nomination forms

APNU and PPP accuse each other of forging signatures on LGE nomination forms

Days after submitting their lists of candidates for the upcoming Local Government Elections, the ruling People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) and the main opposition – A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) – are accusing each other of forging signatures of candidates and backers on each other’s lists.

At a press conference this morning, Leader of the Opposition and Chairman of APNU, Aubrey Norton said the PPP/C has unpacked its old bag of dirty tricks, and has engaged in a scheme of coercion, intimidation, and bribery of voters.

He said to compound the situation, the PPP/C has reportedly forged the signatures of several individuals.

“The APNU wishes to bring to the attention of all Guyanese that the PPP forged the signatures of many Guyanese. This is another manifestation of their corrupt nature. Many of those persons whose signatures were forged by the PPP in support of the PPP wrote GECOM demanding the withdrawal of their names. We await the outcome of that,” Norton told reporters.

In support of his claims, Norton released scanned copies of a number of statutory declarations made by PPP/C candidates, which according to him, contained the forged signatures. He said APNU will be registering its objections at the level of the Elections Commission.

Even as he continued to register his party’s lack of confidence in the Chairman of the Elections Commission, Justice (Ret’d) Claudette Singh, Norton accused GECOM of approving defective lists submitted by the PPP/C.

“In the Woodlands/Bel Air NDC, the PPP’s list was rejected by GECOM officials because all the signatures for First Past the Post (FPTP) and Proportional Representation (PR) were signed by one person. The PPP was given up to Tuesday 18th April to correct this illegality. They made another submission and again all of them were signed by one person for everyone. Unfortunately, GECOM illegally has given them the go-ahead to participate. It must be noted that there are persons who are thumb printers and rather than their thumb print appearing, they were signed for. This amounts to fraud and will be challenged,” Norton said.

Hours later, General Secretary of the PPP/C, Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo laid similar claims at the feet of APNU.

“I agree with Mr Norton on this point, that anyone who has committed any illegality in these elections should face the full brunt of the law. So, we are aware that Mr Norton’s party has forged many candidates, their signatures, placed them on list that they never had any knowledge of; they have forged signatures of the backers; they have forged signatures and we are taking steps to address this matter,” the PPP/C General Secretary said. 

Jagdeo disputed the claim by the Opposition Leader that the APNU is contesting in almost all of the constituencies spread across the 80 Local Authorities Areas.

“Now what are the facts. The facts are that APNU only contested in 279 of the 610 constituencies across the country. And I am repeating that, APNU is contesting in 279 of the 610 constituencies in the country. That is about 45% of all of the constituencies in the country,” Jagdeo said while accusing the Opposition Leader of lying to the public.

He said due to the limited number of constituencies in which the opposition and other groups are contesting in, it is clear that the PPP/C will overwhelmingly win the June 12 Elections.

“There will be no contest in about 283 of the 610 constituencies; that means the PPP has already won those constituencies because we contested in all 610, right across the country. So, we have already practically won, 283 of the 610 constituencies,” the PPP/C General Secretary said.

Local Government Elections are set to take place on the 12th June.

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