As the May 11 date approaches for national and regional elections, the Guyana Elections Commission has announced that the Official List of Electors will be published nationally on April 28.
That announcement was made during a meeting between the Elections Commission and representatives of A Partnership for National Unity + Alliance For Change coalition last Friday.
In a statement, the Elections Commission also announced that 2,299 polling stations have been identified and will be used on elections day. Of that number, 166 of the polling stations will be located at private residences.
According to the GECOM statement, the Coalition representatives expressed concerns about possible lateness of notification relative to changes of Polling Stations, especially those that are private residences.
In response, the Chief Election Officer, Keith Lowenfield indicated that as far as is practicable, GECOM will be contacting Political Parties promptly and notifying them about any changes in location of any Polling Station, should any such changes occur.
During the meeting, enquiries were also made by the Coalition about GECOM’s current posture as it relates to the issuance of Certificates of Employment to Polling Agents working on Election Day. That certificate would allow election day staff to cast their ballots at the polling stations where they are working rather than the polling station in their area.
GECOM’s Chairman Dr. Steve Surujbally, told the APNU+AFC team that GECOM has undertaken steps to ensure that due process is maintained in order to achieve a legally binding position on the matter of issuance of Certificates of Employment.
The Elections Commission has indicated that it is working assiduously to ensure it delivers an election that is free, fair, credible and transparent.
“GECOM took the opportunity to encourage the APNU+AFC to place every confidence in the professional work being done by the Commission and Secretariat. The APNU+AFC assured the Chairman and his team that it has confidence in GECOM’s undertakings”, the statement added.
APNU+AFC team was represented by Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine, Joseph Harmon, David Patterson, Clayton Hall and Tabita Sarbo-Halley.
GECOM was led by its Chairman, Dr. Steve Surujbally, Chief Election Officer, Keith Lowenfield, Deputy Chief Election Officer, Vishnu Persaud, and Public Relations Officer, Richard Francois.
The major political parties contesting the elections have been raising concern about the electoral process and the preparations. GECOM keeps reassuring that all systems are in place.