Tras 50 días sin resultados, la presidenta de la Comisión Electoral denuncia amenazas de muerte

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Contexto de Nodal
Las elecciones del 2 de marzo en Guyana se dieron luego de que el Congreso rechazara una moción de confianza al presidente David Granger y casi un año después de la fecha estipulada. A ese contexto, se sumó el descubrimiento y la explotación del yacimiento Lizao que dejará al país como uno de los mayores productores de petróleo per cápita. Tras los comicios, las acusaciones de fraude por parte de la oposición y de los observadores internacionales llevaron a la Corte Suprema a frenar el conteo y, hasta hoy, siguen sin conocerse los resultados.

Jefe de ente electoral de Guyana amenazada de muerte por recuento

La presidenta de la Comisión de Elecciones de Guyana (Gecom), Claudette Singh, denunció este lunes ante la Policía que recibió varias amenazas de muerte el fin de semana relacionadas con el reconteo de los comicios del 2 de marzo.

“No tengo miedo porque la muerte es inevitable y creo en Dios”, dijo Singh ayer al explicar que las intimidaciones están vinculadas con la petición de que dé la orden para que se reanude el reconteo de los comicios, cuyo resultado oficial todavía no se conoce a causa de reclamaciones judiciales por supuestas irregularidades.

Guyana, un país del noroeste de Suramérica con unas de las principales reservas petroleras del mundo, celebró el 2 de marzo elecciones generales y regionales, una cita en la que dos partidos se jugaron la victoria, con el trasfondo de la disputa con Venezuela por la región de Esequibo y bajo sospechas de fraude.

El presidente y candidato de una coalición oficialista, David Granger, convocó esos comicios tras la presentación con éxito de una moción de no confianza en su contra en diciembre de 2018 -con 33 votos a favor y 32 en contra- por parte del partido PPP, que tuvo en estas elecciones como alternativa a presidente a Irfaan Ali.

La Gecom acordó a principios del presente mes – luego de que tribunales decidieran que las reclamaciones contra el recuento no procedían- un nuevo cómputo de los votos de la elecciones generales y regionales, que había estado paralizado por demandas ante un proceso electoral bajo sospecha de falta de transparencia e irregularidades.

Con relación al recuento, Singh indicó que quiere asegurar la seguridad del grupo de observación de la Comunidad el Caribe (Caricom) antes de establecer una fecha.

El comisionado nominado por el Gobierno para el Gecom, Vincent Alexander, también señaló que ha estado recibiendo amenazas todos los días.

“Todos recibimos amenazas. Todos los días tienen algo que decir sobre mí, todo tipo de cosas, ese es el nivel que estamos operando. Si revisas Facebook. Todos los días “, afirmó.

El secretario general del opositor Partido Progresista del Pueblo (PPP), Bharrat Jagdeo, pidió ayer por escrito a Singh que haga valer su autoridad para asegurar que el recuento de votos será “transparente y libre de fraude”.

Tanto la oficialista Asociación para la Unidad Nacional + Alianza para el Cambio (APNU + AFC) como el opositor PPP se habían adjudicado la victoria en las lecciones.

A pesar de las fuertes críticas de los observadores internacional, la Gecom divulgó poco después de las elecciones unos resultados de los comicios que daban como ganador a la APNU + AFC, con un escaño más que el opositor PPP

El Carabobeno


‘Not long from now’

Following the approval of a 10-hour work day and the reversal of a decision to quarantine CARICOM observers for 14 days, the Guyana Elections Com-mission (GECOM) is one step closer to executing a national recount of votes cast in the March 2 General and Regional Elections.

“Not long from now,” GECOM Chair, retired Justice Claudette Singh, told reporters yesterday when asked for a start date.

Government-nominated GECOM Commissioner Vincent Alexander added that the Commission expected to receive a “draft order” for the recount last evening though the “start date” itself will be influenced by the availability of the high-level observer team from the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).

Stabroek News


GECOM Chairman rebuffs death threat; recount depends on CARICOM team’s arrival

The Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), Claudette Singh says she has lodged a report with police and cybercrime investigators about a threat on her life but she says she is not afraid of death and she vowed to get the national vote recount off the ground.

“I reported it to police but also cybercrime. They have a bounty on my head from Friday night,” Singh told reporters shortly after she, other commissioners and members of the National COVID-19 Task Force toured the Arthur Chung Conference Centre where the recount of votes cast in the March 2, 2020 general elections would be conducted.

The GECOM Chairman indicated that she was not afraid. “I am not afraid because death is inevitable and I believe in God,” she said. Singh recommitted to ensuring the more than 400,000 votes are recounted. “I am doing everything possible. I am the person who spoke about the recount. I am the person who made that commitment and I am going to see it through. I, like them, want to see it over,” she said.

The GECOM Chairman said the start-date would depend on a decision by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretary-General, Irwin La Rocque. Election Commissioner, Vincent Alexander added that “the starting time would be adjusted with when they are able to arrive. so when they indicate to us when they will be available to arrive , that will influence the start time.”

Alexander said a draft order, which would be published in the Official Gazette, would be circulated among commissioners.

He added that one of the suggestions would be used as a “trial-run” to arrive at an estimate time per ballot box. He reconfirmed that Region Four would be counted simultaneously with another region, in contrast to calls by the opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) for Region Four to be recounted first.

He also told reporters that the recount was likely to last 10 hours each day from 8 AM to 6 PM, now that the curfew hours have been relaxed for workers involved in the process. He said the National COVID-19 Task Force has advised that each room should not have more than 14 people at any time, sanitising measures, and provisions must be made for proper access to specially designated washrooms for different areas of the building.

He said the 14 persons would include four persons per workstation as well as scrutineers and observers.

Alexander was optimistic that there would be sufficient projectors and other equipment, some of which would be provided by the Arthur Chung Conference Centre, for the 10 workstations. “GECOM will make every effort I understand to resource 10,” he said.

That GECOM Commissioner confirmed that the CARICOM High-Level team that would be coming to scrutinise and validate the vote count would not have to be quarantined for 14 days on arrival in Guyana because they would be tested for the coronavirus before they arrive.

PPP-aligned Elections Commissioner, Sase Gunraj, after Monday’s second site-visit at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre, insisted that more than 10 workstations could be accommodated. He stressed that there was no reason for GECOM, being an independent constitutional body, to consult with anyone before making decisions. “We had no duty or no obligation to seek guidance or clarity or permission from the COVID-19 Task Force , as it so labelled, because it was always moy position that what we needed to do is to inform them of the decisions that we have taken and which we intend to implement,” Gunraj said. He charged that there was a “naked attempt” at political interference by those who are responsible for crafting policies.

At the same time, he was not opposed to CARICOM being assured of their health and safety due to the COVID-19 virus, but he was wary that that was being used to scuttle the recount of persons.

Both the PPP and A Partnership for National Unity+Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) have claimed victory in last month’s general elections.

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