In a majority decision this afternoon, the Court of Appeal after ruling that it has jurisdiction to hear the Election declaration matter taken before it by Sophia resident, Eslyn David, determined that the words “more votes than” as stated in the Constitution is interpreted to mean “more valid votes”.
The ruling has effectively thrown the issue back to the Guyana Elections Commission to determine the issue of credibility as set out in the Elections Recount Order, using valid votes.
Appeal Court Judges Dawn Gregory and Brassington Reynolds both agreed on the interpretation of more votes cast to mean more valid votes.
The other Appeal Court Judge, Rishi Persaud established that in his view the Court did not have jurisdiction to hear and determine the matter.
Justice Rishi Persaud said the Court action in his opinion was misconceived and that’s why he decided to struck the matter out completely.
Appeal Justice Brassington Reynolds in his ruling noted that the Elections Commission has the responsibility to look at both qualitative and quantitative assessments in its determination of the final credible vote count.
Justice Brassington said that would be in keeping with the gazetted order that facilitated the recount.
President of the Court, Justice Dawn Gregory in her assessment and ruling in determining “more votes cast” means “more valid votes”, said the Court has interpretation jurisdiction and was therefore within its right to offer the interpretation of the words sought by the applicant.
All of the other orders sought by the applicant were refused.
The Court of Appeal has placed a stay on its ruling for three days.
The Court action was filed last week by Sophia resident Eslyn David who was concerned that the Guyana Elections Commission was moving to declare the elections without taking into account and acting on the anomalies uncovered during the vote recount.