Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo has indicated that he is “not averse” to President David Granger suggesting names of possible nominees for the post of Chairman of the Elections Commission.
The Opposition Leader’s position was contained in a letter that was sent by PPP Executive Member Gail Teixeira to the Director General at the Ministry of the Presidency Joe Harmon.
In came in response to a letter from Mr. Harmon which appeared to suggest that the President’s understanding of the ruling of the Caribbean Court of Justice was that he would also offer nominees for the GECOM Chairman position.
In its ruling, the CCJ said it believes the President and the Leader of the Opposition should meet and consult on eligible candidates before the formal list of nominees is submitted.
Harmon said the government has understood that to mean that nominees for the list of six persons will be provided by both the President and the Opposition Leader.
But in her response, Ms. Teixeira wrote that the Court was just offering some guidance on what should take place before a formal list is submitted, explaining that the guidance does not suggest that the President should submit candidates.
However, she added, that in an effort to find consensus, the Opposition Leader is not averse to the President “informally suggesting” names of possible nominees.
The President and the Opposition Leader are likely to meet in the new week as the search begins for a new Chairman of the Elections Commission.
The Constitution states that the Leader of the Opposition should submit a list of six nominees who are not unacceptable to the President.
Back in 2017, the Opposition Leader submitted three different lists and they were all rejected by the President, who later went ahead and appointed the GECOM Chairman on his own.
The CCJ ruled two weeks ago that the President’s move was flawed and against the Constitution.