Western Heads of Missions in Guyana along with the local Private Sector Commission have collectively agreed that there was no disturbance during Monday’s polls that is material enough to affect the results which is to be declared by the Guyana Elections Commission – GECOM.
At a Tuesday afternoon press conference, British High Commissioner Mr Greg Quinn, U.S Embassy Charge d’ Affaires Bryan Hunt and Canadian High Commissioner Dr. Nicole Giles all declared that the elections were free and fair and said the results must be accepted by all.
Although the ruling People’s Progressive Party Civic has alleged that there were significant irregularities, the Heads of Missions of the ABC countries have assured the polling stations where these irregularities were said to have occurred were visited.
The Diplomats and the PSC said in many instances it turned out to be merely rumors while in other cases it clearly did not affect the electoral process in a major way.
Hunt said the U.S Embassy directly responded to complaints it received from both the ruling party and the opposition coalition and in the end none of its 68 agents who visited nine regions and observed the voting process at over 400 polling places reported a single irregularity.
“What Guyana had was a free and fair and credibility elections,” Hunt added as his Canadian and British colleague nodded in agreement.
The diplomats emphasized the need for the citizens to exercise patience as GECOM tabulates the votes for an official declaration.
They agreed that the systems were working well and the delay is in an effort to ensure accuracy.
“We need to give GECOM time to deliver the results, only GECOM can give you the results and once that is done everyone the results needs to be accepted,” Quinn pitched in.
Meanwhile, Dr. Giles said “Guyanese people can be confident that the declaration of the results will represent how they voted.”
The Missions along with the PSC will compile reports and make recommendations which are likely to call for legislative changes to ensure a faster declaration of results.
The diplomats underscored the need for better access to the media and campaign financing legislation
President of the Private Sector Commission Ramesh Persaud said businesses are currently nervous nonetheless as the results are being awaited.
“Based on what happened yesterday and based on historical senarios many of the businesses have not opened simply out of caution and not incitement,” he added.
Persaud, who was backed up by Gerald “Gerry” Gouveia said he was disappointed with the unrest in Sophia last night and called on political leaders to ensure they rein in their supporters.