The Government of Guyana is not too happy with the recent findings of a poll which was conducted by the US-based International Republican Institute (IRI) in Guyana.
The findings of the poll which was conducted earlier this year were released last week. Among other things, it highlighted that majority of its respondents felt that there needs to be electoral reform and a high percentage of the respondents also expressed low confidence in the declared results following the 2020 General and Regional Elections.
The government is now responding to the findings of the poll, with the Minister of Governance claiming that proper procedures were not followed before the poll was done.
“First of all, any poll done in Guyana requires that it goes before the Ministry of Health review board before any poll is done regarding humans in Guyana. There are other entities that one has to go to if you are doing a poll on scientific aspects of Guyana,” Governance Minister Gail Teixeira said.
Although the IRI said it met with a wide range of actors across government, civil society organizations, Indigenous community organizations, trade unions, and the private sector, and they were consulted in developing the content of the poll, Teixeira said no request was made or approval was granted to conduct any poll in Guyana.
She also said the findings of the poll is questionable because of its low response rate.
“So in my estimation, having such a low response rate changes the sampling method altogether from a random sample to what is called a convenient sample because it appeared as though they pretty surveyed people they could find rather than surveying people that were on the random sampling,” Teixeira said.
Teixeira said the findings of the IRI poll cannot be reflective of the entire population and is likely to be biased and not representative.
“But what is revealing and why one has to be careful with this survey is regarding the geographic sampling that went on,” Teixeira observed.
The Minister said the government is yet to locate a single person who participated in the poll. The government has not made similar claims about other polls that were conducted previously.