The Court of Appeal has set Wednesday, December 7 for the conduct of a Case Management Conference (CMC) in the Election Petition Case challenging the High Court’s decision to uphold Order 60 – the Recount Order- which was used to facilitate the National Recount of the votes cast at the March, 2020 polls.
In dismissing the Election Petition in April 2021, the Chief Justice (ag) Justice Roxane George, ruled that there was nothing unconstitutional about Section 22 of the Election Laws (Amendment) Act and or the Order 60.
It was based on the results of the recount that President Irfaan Ali was elected to office, However, the APNU+AFC is seeking to nullify the entire Elections on the basis that the recount was illegal.
The appeal of the Chief Justice’s ruling was held up for more than 18 months and that was blamed on the unavailability of the written ruling. The written ruling was recently made available.
Against that background, Acting Chancellor Yonette Cummings together with Justices of Appeal Rishi Persaud and Dawn Gregory set December 7 for the conduct of the Case Management Conference.
The Appellate Court also set November 22, 2022 for the preparation, filing and serving of the Record of Appeal.
Senior Counsel Roysdale Forde, and Attorneys John Jeremie, Selwyn Pieters and Mayo Robertson, are representing the appellants – Claudette Thorne and Heston Bostwick.
Thorne and Bostwick, through their attorneys, have argued that the application of Section 22 and Order 60 during the 2020 Elections conflicted with Article 177 of the Constitution. It is their position that Section 22 and Order 60 by their amplitude of power, contravened the doctrine of the Separation of Powers inherent in the Constitution.
The Guyana Elections Commission, former President David Granger, the and Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo are among the 13 respondents in the election case.
Trinidad and Tobago’s Senior Counsel, Douglas Mendes, is representing Mr Jagdeo while Senior Counsel Anthony Astaphan and Attorney Arudranauth Gossai are representing GECOM in the matter.