…exercise went “smoothly” – PRO

The Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) has completed its Claims and Objections Period, capturing more than 3000 new Applicants who will be eligible to vote by October 31, 2022, as well as a Total of 18 Objections to Names on the Preliminary List of Electors (PLE).

GECOM Public Relations Officer Yolanda Ward on Wednesday, October 5th, 2022 provided an updated statistics on claims and objections to the Media. There were some 3000 new Applicants who were registered and in excess of 1800 Requests for Transfers.
“For new Registration we were able to register approximately 3011 Persons. These are new Applicants, who were eligible Electors, as in they will be 18 Years and older by October 31, 2022. We had over 1800 Requests for Transfers. These are Persons who would have changed their Address. They moved from One Location to the next. So, we would have had 1859 such Applications.”
“And Objections, we would have had 18 Objections. During that Period also, we facilitated change correction Transactions and we would have had just about 1123 Persons who requested such Transactions,” Ward said.
The GECOM PRO noted that all 18 Objections went through Hearings where Evidence was presented and the Objections upheld. These Hearings, she said, are in various Stages of being completed.
“It’s mandatory… so after you make an Objection, you have a Period for Hearing where you must provide the authentic Documents to prove your Case, and based on that, the respective Officers make a determination in terms of whether they’re upheld or not.”

GECOM PRO further noted :
“The 18 that we’ve received have been upheld or I think they’re still going through that process in terms of the Hearing. They’ll finalise that. So, as it is, we’ll stick with the 18 Objections that we received,” she said.
She explained that Claims came to an end on September 21, while Objections ended on September 25. According to Ward, the Exercise ran with little to “no hiccups” and the extensions allowed for maximum participation of the Population.
At the time the Claims and Objections Exercise had been extended, GECOM had explained that the Decision to do so by a Week was for Persons to have further opportunities to make changes to the Voters’ List.
Those wishing to make a Claim for inclusion on the Official List of Electors had until September 21st, 2022 to do so. Meanwhile, those wishing to make an Objection to someone on the Voters’ List had until September 25th.
“Further, Objections against the inclusion of Names in the PLE can be tendered to the Registration Officer of the Registration Area. Objection(s) can be submitted by an Elector who is listed in the same Division List/Sub Division List in which the Person being objected to is listed.
“Objections can also be made by approved Scrutineers of Political Parties, provided that any such Scrutineer has monitoring responsibilities for the Division/Sub Division in which the Person being objected to is listed,” the Elections Body had further said, explaining that original Documents must be presented at the Hearing, to support the Objection being made.

It is unclear exactly when Local Government Elections (LGE) will be held, although GECOM is looking at a Workplan with a possible Date of March 2023. GECOM had originally been working on holding LGE by this Year end.

LGE, which are usually due every Two Years, were last held in 2018. At the last LGE in November 2018, the then People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Opposition had secured 52 of the 80 Local Authority Areas (LAAs). This followed the holding of the LGE in 2016, during which the PPP/C also claimed the majority of the LAAs.


Edward Anthony Persaud


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